Gaddafi to visit Belgium
21 April 2004 BRUSSELS - The Libyan leader Moamer Gaddafi will visit Brussels next week for talks with the European Commission President and the Belgian Prime Minister, officials said on Wednesday.
21 April 2004
BRUSSELS - The Libyan leader Moamer Gaddafi will visit Brussels next week for talks with the European Commission President and the Belgian Prime Minister, officials said on Wednesday.
Gaddafi will have lunch with Commission president Romano Prodi on Tuesday, a European source told the French news agency AFP.
The Libyan leader is then set to meet meet Prime Minister Guy Verhofstatdt on Tuesday evening, the Belgian foreign ministry has confirmed.
Gaddafi will stay in Brussels until Wednesday, although details his programme for that day still have to be finalised, the ministry said.
The Belgian trip will be Gaddafi's first official visit outside of Africa or the Middle East since 1989, when he attended a summit of non-aligned countries in Belgrade.
Last month, British Prime Minister Tony Blair flew to Tripoli to shake hands with Gaddafi and express hope that "we can build a new relationship" after Libya promised to renounce its pursuit of weapons of mass destruction.
Over the past year Libya has tried to shed its reputation as a 'pariah state,' in particualr by agreeing to pay compensation to the families of passengers killed in the 1988 bombing of a Pan Am jet over Lockerbie, Scotland and a 1989 attack on a French airliner over Niger.
Those moves led the United Nations to lift economic sanctions against Libya and set Kadhafi back on the path towards international respectability.
A decision by the United States to lift unilateral sanctions it imposed against the the north African state in 1986 is "imminent", and could be announced as early as this week, a senior US official said on Tuesday.
[Copyright Expatica 2004]
Subject: Belgian news