Posted by: africanpressorganization | 22 July 2011

Libya – Meeting between Frattini and Isawi: Italy renews its support for the TNC



Libya – Meeting between Frattini and Isawi: Italy renews its support for the TNC


ROME, Italy, July 22, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Italy has renewed its efforts for the birth of a new Libya, through economic support, civil cooperation and increased pressure on the regime to cease all violence against civilians. This was the assurance made by Ministry Franco Frattini at his meeting at the Foreign Ministry in Rome with the Vice Chairman of the Transitional National Committee in Benghazi, Ali Al-Isawi.

On the economic front, said Frattini, “the last technical problems are being resolved” to send fuel and 350 million euros in cash to Benghazi. “It’s a matter of days”, he added. Italy has approved “domestic legislation that will make it possible to deliver a huge amount of money” to meet the needs of the Libyan population in the areas under rebel control. Frattini stressed to Al-Isawi the need for the new Libyan government to respect and implement existing contracts with Italian enterprises.

As regards the political aspects of the situation, Frattini and Al-Isawi discussed the outcome of the Contact Group meeting in Istanbul, where the TNC was recognised as legitimate representative of the Libyan government. Frattini explained that “a plan is being drawn up that will be submitted to both sides. It includes a road map for the restoration of peace to the country and a ceasefire, the only pre-condition being that Gaddafi must leave power”. The Minister reiterated that the United Nations must be entrusted with managing the negotiations. “Only one of the two sides wants to talk, i.e. the TNC, with the regime continuing to refuse to negotiate”, Frattini pointed out. He added that “the only way forward is to identify people from the government in Tripoli who are willing to sit down at the negotiating table and present Gaddafi with the condition that he must leave power”.

As regards the future of the Libyan leader, especially with respect to the international arrest warrant for crimes against humanity, Frattini said that the international community “must not commit to any form of impunity for Gaddafi – that would be an error”. But, at the same time, “I say that it is the Libyans who should decide whether or not Gaddafi has to leave the country. We cannot decide that, certainly not if we are speaking as Italy, where the statute of the International Criminal Court was laid down. […] Libya”, he pointed out, “is not one of the signatory countries to the Rome Statute, which requires that the rules (of the ICC) be respected – including the arrest warrant. The international community “will respect” the decisions of the Libyan people. On this point Al-Isawi responded: “our main objective is for Gaddafi to leave power. We can talk about the details later”.

Turning to the situation on the ground, the TNC representative explained that the rebels “are gaining ground and drawing nearer to Tripoli”. Yesterday they attacked a compound where “senior dignitaries of the Libyan government” were located. A “very strong signal” of a rebellion in the capital of Libya itself.



Italy – Ministry of Foreign Affairs


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