Libyan TNC head postpones Italy visit for "domestic urgencies"

17:02, April 16, 2011      

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Libya's Transitional National Council (TNC) chairman Mustafa Abdul Jalil postponed Friday his visit to Rome for "domestic urgencies" concerning the ongoing Libyan crisis, according to a senior Italian official.

"The situation in Libya is indeed very delicate. Due to the conflicts' daily developments Jalil is very busy and cannot afford being absent from Libya," said Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs Stefania Craxi.

It was the second time Jalil was forced to postpone his trip to Rome as he has to stay in Libya to command the rebel's military actions on the ground, said Craxi.

The TNC leader was supposed to meet Italian President Giorgio Napolitano, Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and Foreign Minister Franco Frattini.

Craxi warned the Libyan crisis had reached the most critical moment and faced the risk of a prolonged deadlock in peace negotiations.

"The intensification of the conflict is complicating the scenario. I fear we might be facing months of stalemate and a worsening humanitarian emergency."

Craxi said the Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi still remained militarily strong in certain areas of Libya.

She also said that more should be done to break the negotiation impasse and reach a ceasefire.

"It is very hard right now to identify a solution, but I think that in the short run UN resolution 1973 which imposed a no-fly zone over Libya will turn out to be insufficient in addressing the crisis. As time goes by and the situation in Libya gets worse, countries in the world might have to ponder on the opportunity of another, more incisive resolution," she said.

Craxi also appealed to the Arab League, urging it to adopt a more burden-sharing approach in tackling the crisis and face its responsibilities.

"We must consider that the conflict in Libya coincides with a global, tough economic outlook. Financial resources for military operations are limited because many countries are already involved in other zones of conflict across the world, such as Afghanistan where Italy is very active," she noted.

Berlusconi definitely ruled out at a special cabinet meeting Friday that Italy might take part in NATO air raids over Libya, saying it was "already doing a lot" by offering its military bases to the coalition and its allies.

Source: Xinhua

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