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French Lawmakers Boycott Meeting With Libya's Gadhafi


Some French lawmakers have boycotted a meeting with Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi in protest against his country's human rights record.

Members of the Socialist Party and some from the ruling Union for a Popular Movement refused to attend Tuesday's event at the National Assembly.

Mr. Gadhafi began his visit to France on Monday and met with French President Nicholas Sarkozy.

Mr. Sarkozy says he asked Mr. Gadhafi to make progress on human rights. But the Libyan leader later denied that in an interview with French television.

On Monday, the two countries signed business deals worth billions of dollars, including Libya's purchase of a civilian nuclear reactor and 21 Airbus planes.

It is Mr. Gadhafi's first trip to France since 1973.

Libya was long-condemned for supporting terrorism, but its relations with the international community have improved since the country ended its nuclear weapons program in 2003.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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