News / Africa

Italy Says No Stalemate in Libya

Foreign Minister Franco Frattini, left, and Mahmoud Jibril, the head of the executive committee of Libya's rebel group, the Transitional National Council in Naples, Italy (File Photo - June 17, 2011)
Foreign Minister Franco Frattini, left, and Mahmoud Jibril, the head of the executive committee of Libya's rebel group, the Transitional National Council in Naples, Italy (File Photo - June 17, 2011)
Sabina Castelfranco

Italy’s foreign ministry spokesman, Maurizio Massari, insists the international community is on the right track in Libya and that the next step is for political negotiations to kick off to end the rule of long-time leader Moammar Gadhafi.  

Despite slow rebel advances in Libya and the fact no political negotiations are yet underway, the Italian foreign ministry spokesman says he is optimistic about the country’s future. Maurizio Massari was speaking two days before the international contact group on Libya is to meet in Istanbul.

“Our assessment is positive," he said. "We refuse the idea that we are in a situation of stalemate. We are making progress on the ground. The ability of the Gadhafi regime to attack civilians has been severely damaged.”

Massari added that the Transitional National Council of the Libyan opposition now has increased legitimacy, as it has been recognized by 18 states. He said the time has come to work politically as well as militarily.

“We would like to prepare the conditions to pave the way for future negotiations but we are still in a preliminary stage,” said Messari.

He indicated three priorities for the Istanbul meeting of the contact group: the search for a political solution to Libya's conflict, the identification of economic support mechanisms for the rebels, and a post-conflict plan.

Massari said time is not on Gadhafi’s side.  

The contact group meeting is expected to discuss the political conditions needed for negotiations on Libya's future to take place.

The conditions, Massari said, must include the acceptance that Moammar Gadhafi cannot be part of any political solution, the acceptance of dialogue among different Libyan groups, and the need for a cease-fire to be in place because otherwise it is not possible to negotiate.

“We are gradually building the conditions for a democratic and united Libya," added Massari. "Of course there is still a lot of work to do but we are on the right track.”

The Italian diplomat said Italy fully backs the democratic credentials of the opposition Transitional National Council and the need for it to engage in dialogue with the other components of Libyan society.  He added that the African Union’s acceptance that Gadhafi must leave power is a very positive development.

You May Like

Reports of Mass Murder on Mediterranean Smuggler’s Boat

Boat sailed from Libya with 750 migrants aboard and arrived in Italy with 569 More

Video New Thailand Hotline Targets Misbehaving Monks

Officials say move aims to restore country’s image of Buddhism, tarnished by recent high profile scandals such as opulent lifestyle, drug and alcohol abuse, as well as child sex abuse More

Study: Dust from Sahara Helped Form Bahama Islands

What does the Sahara have in common with a Caribbean island? Quite a lot, researchers say More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train in Underwater Labi
X
George Putic
July 25, 2014 7:25 PM
In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid