Friday, May 27, 2011

Russia urged to mediate in Libya crisis

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev arrives for an evening dinner function at the G8 summit in Deauville, France on May 26, 2011

Source: Press TV

Russia says the Western members of the Group of Eight (G8) have demanded that Moscow assume a mediation role to put an end to the war in Libya.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev's “partners in all bilateral meetings called on Russia to assume a mediation mission in Libya," Reuters quoted the Russian president's spokeswoman, Natalia Timakova, as saying on Thursday.

The spokesperson did not say how or whether Russia has reacted to the proposal.

Medvedev held bilateral meetings with French, US and British leaders during the G8's annual summit which will end on Friday.

Russia has been critical of NATO's operations in Libya, saying airstrikes go beyond the UN resolution which mandated a no-fly zone over the North African country.

Libyan Prime Minister Al Baghdadi Ali al-Mahmoudi said on Thursday that Tripoli was ready for an immediate UN-monitored ceasefire. The Libyan regime had previously announced readiness for a ceasefire but has continued fighting against revolutionary forces.

The mediation requests from Russia come as the British government has approved the deployment of Apache helicopters to Libya. On Monday, France said it would send attack helicopters to the North African country.

Meanwhile, US President Barack Obama has said there will not be “a let-up in the pressure” against the Libyan regime until Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi quits power.

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