France, Germany urge EU to dialogue with Libyan opposition

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French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe on Thursday said Paris and Berlin were calling on their European Union partners to engage in dialogue with Libyan opposition leaders.

Speaking after talks with German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, Juppe said, "We are on the same track to say Colonel Kadhafi is discredited, he must go, we must engage dialogue with the new Libyan representatives."

Juppe spoke as the EU's 27 foreign ministers arrived in Brussels for emergency talks on Libya as NATO defence ministers also prepared to mull options at separate talks in the EU capital.

Shortly before, France became the first country to recognise Libya's opposition national council and said it would send an ambassador to the rebel-held city of Benghazi.

The national council is the only "legitimate representative of the Libyan people," the French presidency said in a statement after meeting in Paris with its envoys.

© 2011 AFP

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