Zuma back home after successful Libyan peace talks

Monday, April 11, 2011

Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma has described peace talks with Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi as "successful".

On Monday, the Presidency said Zuma, who led a delegation of African leaders to Tripoli, was happy with the outcomes of the meeting, where Gaddafi has accepted a roadmap for ending the political conflict in Libya.

Zuma, with four other African Heads of State, met Gaddafi for several hours at the Libyan leader's Bab al-Aziziyah compound, where they trashed out details of the mission aimed at working towards a peaceful solution to the crisis.

"Our visit was a huge success. The Libyan Leader, Muammar Gaddafi, accepted the road map of the African Union, which in our view, will enable the AU to assist Libya towards lasting peace and democracy. 

"Only an inclusive dialogue among the Libyan parties on the appropriate reforms will ensure a lasting solution in Libya. South Africa, as a member of the panel, is very happy with the outcome of the meeting," said Zuma. 

The AU Committee first met in Mauritania, before heading off to Tripoli on Sunday, where they met with the leader of the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, and later Gaddafi. 

While Zuma returned to South Africa on Monday, the Heads of State were expected to visit Benghazi to meet with the opposition. 

Zuma had to return to South Africa as he is scheduled to leave for China on Tuesday to attend South Africa's first meeting as a member of the Brazil-Russia-India-China grouping, which has since been known as BRICS following South Africa's membership.

Among the proposals made by the Peace and Security Council of the African were: 
- an immediate cessation of all hostilities, 
- the cooperation of the competent Libyan authorities to facilitate the timely delivery of humanitarian assistance to the needy populations, 
- the protection of foreign nationals, including the African migrants living in Libya, and 
- the adoption and implementation of the political reforms necessary for the elimination of the causes of the current crisis. - BuaNews