News / Africa

South Africa, Libya Hold Inconclusive Talks as Officers Defect

South African President Jacob Zuma (C-R) is greeted by Libyan PM Baghdadi al-Mahmudi (front-R) and local tribesmen upon his arrival in Tripoli on May 30, 2011
South African President Jacob Zuma (C-R) is greeted by Libyan PM Baghdadi al-Mahmudi (front-R) and local tribesmen upon his arrival in Tripoli on May 30, 2011

South African President Jacob Zuma made little progress towards brokering a Libya peace deal in talks with leader Moammar Gadhafi as eight army officers became the latest senior figures to break with the Libyan government.

Mr. Zuma told Libyan media in Tripoli Monday that Mr. Gadhafi wants a cease-fire to include an end to NATO bombing, terms already rejected last month after an earlier mediation mission by the South African president. Mr. Zuma also did not say the Libyan leader is ready to step down, the central demand of the rebels', who quickly rejected the latest offer.

Libyan television broadcast footage of Mr. Gadhafi welcoming Mr. Zuma, the Libyan leader's first reported public appearance since May 11.

In April, Mr. Zuma led an African Union delegation to Tripoli with a truce proposal. Mr. Gadhafi said he would accept the terms, but quickly resumed his attacks, while anti-government rebels rejected the cease-fire because it did not include the Libyan leader's exit from power.

Meanwhile, eight top Libyan army officers held a press conference in Rome Monday, claiming they are part of some 120 soldiers who recently defected from Libya.

The appearance by five generals, two colonels and a major was organized by the Italian government.

The men read an appeal to fellow army officers and top police and security officials, urging them to abandon Mr. Gadhafi's government. One of the officers denounced what he said was "genocide" and "violence against women" in various Libyan cities. Another estimated that Mr. Gadhafi's military is now operating at only 20 percent capacity.

Earlier Monday, NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said the alliance's nearly two-month-long campaign of airstrikes in Libya has "seriously degraded" the ability of Mr. Gadhafi's forces to kill their own people. Speaking at a NATO forum in Bulgaria, Rasmussen said Mr. Gadhafi is "increasingly isolated" at home and abroad with close allies "departing, defecting or deserting" the Libyan leader.

NATO forces have been operating under a U.N. Security Council mandate to protect civilians from Mr. Gadhafi's attempts to crush the uprising. Libya's state news agency says NATO airstrikes killed 11 people in the western town of Zlitan on Monday. There was no confirmation from NATO on that report.

Also Monday, an Internet video showed a rare anti-Gadhafi demonstration in Tripoli. In the video, protesters at a funeral were seen chanting "Moammar [Gadhafi] is the enemy of God!" Activists said the video was filmed Monday at the burial for two slain protesters in a suburb of the capital, but this could not be independently confirmed.

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

You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life 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.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More