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Greek PM to unveil Libya peace plan in ‘next day or two’

Will be based on U.N. Security Council resolutions, says deputy foreign minister

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Greece will present a peace initiative for Libya's civil conflict "in the next day or two," Greece's deputy foreign minister told The Washington Times on Monday.

"We require a transition from the current regime," Dimitris Dollis said in a telephone interview. "We also require political reforms."

Mr. Dollis said that Prime Minister George Papandreou "has been talking to his colleagues" about the Libyan crisis and is "talking to other governments about what we consider to be a way forward."

He declined to divulge details of the Papandreou plan, but said "the basis of that initiative will be full adherence to United Nations Security Council resolutions."

Mr. Dollis, Mr. Papandreou and Foreign Minister Dimitris Droutsas met Sunday with Libya's acting foreign minister, Abdul Ati al-Obeidi, in Athens. Mr. Dollis said the meeting lasted "over an hour."

"We repeated the message of the international community that we request the full respect an the implementation of the United Nations Security Council resolutions and specifically we asked for an immediate ceasefire and an end to the violence against the Libyan people," Mr. Dollis said.

"The message that [Mr. al-Obeidi] brought is that we must avoid a civil war and the crisis must end," he added. "But for the crisis to end, we require full implementation of the Security Council resolution."

Formerly Libya's deputy foreign minister, Mr. al-Obeidi assumed his new position after his former boss, Musa Kusa, defected last week to London.

U.N. Security Council's Resolution 1973 calls for Libyan authorities to stop attacking their people; enter a dialogue to reach a peaceful, political solution to the crisis; and comply with international human-rights laws.

Asked whether they had discussed proposals for dictator Moammar Gadhafi's exit, Mr. Dollis said that avoiding a full-blown humanitarian disaster was the meeting's primary priority.

"I think the discussion of Gadhafi [muddies] the waters because they will come in and say that the U.N. resolution does not specifically talk about that, but what we indicated is that the international community has expressed itself fully on this situation," he said.

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About the Author

Ben Birnbaum

Ben Birnbaum is a reporter covering foreign affairs for The Washington Times. Prior to joining The Times, Birnbaum worked as a reporter-researcher at the New Republic. A Boston-area native, he graduated magna cum laude from Cornell University with a degree in government and psychology. He won multiple collegiate journalism awards for his articles and columns in the Cornell Daily Sun.

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