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Monday, May 30, 2011

South African Leader In Libyan Mission

South Africa's President Jacob Zuma is expected to arrive in Tripoli today to attempt to broker a peace deal with the Libyan leader Colonel Gaddafi

It is expected that Mr Zuma will meet face to face with Col Gaddafi - who hasn't been seen publicly for weeks and whose own officials admit is 'on the move' fearing Nato is trying to kill him.

The meeting may give some sense of whether or not Col Gaddafi accepts that the time for talk has arrived - and it could be a significant indicator as to the dictator's thinking.
Publicly regime officials insist Col Gaddafi will not accept a deal which involves stepping aside, but privately some are starting to voice the view with me that he must step aside in order for the country to hold new elections.
Muammar Gaddafi appears on state TV
Col Gaddafi is trying to avoid death by Nato air strike
I was first here at the end of February and to hear something like that then would have been unthinkable.
Mr Zuma and Gaddafi are old friends.
The South African is widely reported to have accepted financial assistance from Gaddafi during his serial trials for fraud and rape, but has never confirmed this himself.
Mr Zuma's officials say he is visiting in his capacity as a member of the African Union High Level Panel for the Resolution of the Conflict in Libya.
South Africa is a member of the UN Security Council and despite voting for UN Resolution 1973 has criticised the bombing campaign.
Nato has unleashed a series of deadly airstrikes on the Libyan capital of Tripoli as it tries to oust leader Colonel Gaddafi.
Nato has started day raids against the regime in Tripoli
Mr Gaddafi has a circle of advisors but notoriously after nearly 42 years in power he is a political island.
There are several key factors which will make attempts to force Col Gaddafi out of the country more difficult.
He may see it as betraying the memory of his son Saif al-Arab and three grandchildren who were killed in a Nato air strike.
And it has to be remembered that the International Criminal Court is seeking arrest warrants for Col Gaddafi and his son Saif al-Islam.
British Apache helicopters are being deployed to Libya
British Apache helicopters are also trying to oust regime forces
Until now his son Saif al-Islam has continued to insist he and his father will "live in Libya and die in Libya".
Government officials insist the regime can weather the continuing and increasing Nato air strikes.
Over the last week the military actions has intensified and there've been daytime bombings for the first time over the long weekend.
This may signal a change in strategy by Nato sending a message to the dictator that they will continue to strike at the heart of his regime whenever they want.


  1. I don't think there is anyway out for gadaffi except for him to keep fighting.

  2. I hope he dies, I hate oppressors.


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