A long-standing demand from the East Libyan rebels for any sort of peace talks, and seemingly among the reasons officials earlier in the day rejected the latest African Union attempt at brokering a ceasefire, has been the ouster of Moammar Gadhafi into exile.
But now rebel leader Mustafa Abdel Jalil says that demand no longer stands, and Gadhafi would be allowed to stay in Libya “under international supervision” during hypothetical peace talks. Exactly how those talks might start was unclear.
But Jalil’s demands went a bit deeper than this, insisting that before Gadhafi resigned he would also have to order all regime troops to abandon all of their positions and allow the rebels to take over the entire country.
Jalil insisted his proposal was nothing new and he made it to the United Nations a month ago. It seems unlikely, with both sides locked in a virtual stalemate, that any peace talks conditioned on the virtually total surrender of one side is going to be a realistic starting point.
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