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French Warning Appears to Revive Talks with Libya - 2003-10-12

Media reports say French President Jacques Chirac's warning to Libya on Saturday appears to have revived talks between Libya and France over compensation for families of an airliner bombing over Africa in 1989.

Quoting multiple sources, wire services report that negotiations between families of victims and the Libyan government may start again this week.

A deadline linked to an earlier arrangement between the two sides passed Saturday night without a deal. The arrangement called for Libya to increase compensation payments to families of the 170 people killed when a French UTA airliner blew up over Niger.

On Saturday, while on a state visit to Morocco, Mr. Chirac warned the Libyan government relations between France and Libya would likely suffer if Libya went back on its word.

France accepted a $33 million settlement offer for the UTA bombing, but began demanding a larger settlement after a separate agreement was reached in August for the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, which went down in Lockerbie, Scotland, in 1988. Both bombings were linked to Libya.