News / Europe

US Wary of Gaddafi Peace Feelers

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton disembarks from her airplane upon arrival in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2011.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton disembarks from her airplane upon arrival in Istanbul, Turkey, July 15, 2011.

Senior U.S. officials say they’re skeptical of hints from Libyan emissaries to Europe that besieged Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi may be considering giving up power. The officials traveled with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to a meeting of the international “contact group” on Libya in Turkey.

A senior State Department official says while there are “a lot of straws in the wind” about the Libyan leader perhaps giving up power, the United States is not persuaded that any of the signals are definitive, and it is holding to its insistence that he cede power.

The official spoke to reporters traveling to Turkey with Clinton amid recent reports attributed to various Libyan emissaries to Europe that Mr. Gaddafi may be ready to give up all but ceremonial posts in Libya, or in another scenario, transfer power to one of his sons in a transitional arrangement.

The U.S. official said the United States and other countries in the Libya “contact group” opening talks in Istanbul Friday have not change demands that the Libyan leader cease violence, withdraw forces from around rebel held areas, and make clear that he is prepared to step down from all government posts he holds so there can be a political transition.

Earlier this week, Clinton said Gaddafi associates were sending mixed messages about whether he might be prepared to step down, but that in any case, she said his days in power are “numbered.”

After the contact group meeting, the fourth since its founding in April, Clinton will hold bilateral talks with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and other top Turkish officials on a range of issues including political unrest in Turkey’s neighbor Syria.

Clinton arrived in Turkey amid a resurgence of clashes between Turkish forces and the militant Kurdish group the PKK, which is listed by the United States as a terrorist organization.

Thirteen Turkish troops were killed in a clash with the PKK Thursday in a southeastern province near Iraq.

Clinton said she was deeply saddened by the news and would personally convey to Turkish leaders the U.S. commitment to cooperate against the group. State Department Deputy Spokesman Mark Toner condemned the attack in Washington.

“ We express our condolences to the families of the victims and we stand in solidarity with Turkey.  The United States condemns in the strongest terms today’s killings of Turkish soldiers, and we strongly support Turkey in its fight against terror and will continue to work with the Government of Turkey to combat terrorism in all its forms,” Toner said.

Clinton’s visit to Turkey is the first stop on a 12-day around the world trip that will also take her to Greece, India, Indonesia and China.

State Department officials announced Thursday that in addition to a stop in Hong Kong, Clinton will travel to the nearby Chinese city of Shenzhen for a wide-ranging set of political talks with Chinese State  Councilor Dai Bingguo.

You May Like

Turbulent Transition Imperils Tunisia’s Arab Spring Gains

Critics say new anti-terrorism laws worsen Tunisia's situation while others put faith in country’s vibrant civil organizations, women’s movement More

Burundi’s Political Crisis May Become Humanitarian One

United Nations aid agencies issue warning as deadly violence sends tens of thousands fleeing More

Yemenis Adjust to Life Under Houthi Rule

Locals want warring parties to strike deal to stop bloodletting before deciding how country is governed 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.
Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threati
X
Greg Flakus
May 29, 2015 11:24 PM
Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
Video

Video Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threat

Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
Video

Video New York's One World Trade Center Observatory Opens to Public

From New Jersey to Long Island, from Northern suburbs to the Atlantic Ocean, with all of New York City in-between.  That view became available to the public Friday as the One World Trade Center Observatory opened in New York -- atop the replacement for the buildings destroyed in the September 11, 2001, attacks.  VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports.
Video

Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Purple Door Coffeeshop: Changing Lives One Cup at a Time

For a quarter of his life, Kevin Persons lived on the street. Today, he is working behind the counter of an espresso bar, serving coffee and working to transition off the streets and into a home. Paul Vargas reports for VOA.
Video

Video Modular Robot Getting Closer to Reality

A robot being developed at Carnegie Mellon University has evolved into a multi-legged modular mechanical snake, able to move over rugged surfaces and explore the surroundings. Scientists say such machines could someday help in search and rescue operations. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Shanghai Hosts Big Consumer Electronics Show

Electronic gadgets are a huge success in China, judging by the first Asian Consumer Electronics Show, held this week in Shanghai. Over the course of two days, more than 20,000 visitors watched, tested and played with useful and some less-useful electronic devices exhibited by about 200 manufacturers. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Forced to Return Home, Afghan Refugees Face Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.

VOA Blogs