Obama says U.S. ready to support negotiations for transition in Libya

08:38, July 12, 2011      

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U.S. President Barack Obama said on Monday that his country is prepared to support negotiations that lead to a democratic transition in Libya as long as its leader Muammar Gaddafi steps down.

Obama called his Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev to thank him for Russia's efforts at mediation in Libya, stressing that the U.S. "is prepared to support negotiations that lead to a democratic transition in Libya as long as Gaddafi steps aside," the White House said.

Moscow has been critical of the NATO-led military operations in Libya, saying it would support the peacemaking efforts of the African Union and the United Nations. Russia and NATO met last week in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, but failed to iron out their differences over the approaches to the conflict. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Russia would increase its mediation efforts in Libya.

Obama also offered his support for Medvedev's mediation efforts regarding Nagorno-Karabakh, and pledged American support for the effort to reach a framework agreement for negotiating a final peace agreement that will put an end to the conflict, the White House said in a statement.

Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan met in the Russian city of Kazan in late June, but failed to reach an agreement on a 14-point framework document that would set the stage for an end to their two-decades conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh.

In addition, Obama and Medvedev discussed Sudan and Afghanistan and their "common objectives" in both countries, the White House said.

Due to Obama's efforts to reset bilateral ties, Russia agreed in July 2009 to offer transit over Russian air space for U.S. supplies to its operations in Afghanistan. Besides, Russia is offering help in the efforts of counter-narcotics and reconciliation in Afghanistan.

In their phone talk, Obama and Medvedev reviewed the outstanding issues related to Russia's entry to the World Trade Organization, and agreed to "press to finish all aspects of these negotiations as soon as possible," the White House said.

Obama expressed his condolences on the sinking of cruise ship " Bulgaria" on Sunday in Volga river, a tragedy that killed 58 people.

Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov is in Washington for a Quartet meeting on Middle East with the U.S., the EU and the UN. The White House said Obama looks forward to meeting with him at the White House on Wednesday.

Source: Xinhua
 
 
     
 
 
 
     
 
 
 
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