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Palacio in talks with Libya over arms

Published on 20/01/2004

20 January 2004

MADRID – Spanish Foreign Minister Ana Palacio travelled Tuesday to Libya for talks with leader Muammar Gaddafi on the country’s return to the international community, Spanish diplomats said.

Also on the agenda is the issue of agreements on the control of the North African nation’s once secret programme to develop weapons of mass destruction.

Last month, Gaddafi announced that his country would cease trying to develop such weapons and British and American experts are in Libya to study how to dismantle the weapons programme.

Gaddafi’s surprise annoucement came after the United Nations agreed to lift sanctions on Libya after the government reached a settlement on the Lockerbie case with the United States and Britain.

Spanish Prime Minister José María Aznar was the first Western leader to visit Libya after the sanctions were lifted and Palacio recently said that Madrid wanted to help Libya return to the international fold.

The foreign minister and Gaddafi are also to discuss the situation in North Africa and the region’s relations with the European Union as well as the Middle East conflict, the diplomats said.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news