EU to open office in Libyan rebel stronghold: Ashton

11th May 2011, Comments 0 comments

The European Union is to open an office in Libya's rebel-held city of Benghazi to shore up assistance for the opposition to Moamer Kadhafi, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said Wednesday.

"I intend to open an office in Benghazi so that we can move forward on the support we've discussed to the people," Ashton told the European Parliament.

The aim of the new office would be "to support civil society, to support the interim national council ... to support security sector reform, to build on what the people ask us to," she added.

"They want health and education, health-care, security on the borders, the kind of support we are able to give them and want to give them."

Her statement came the same day rebel leader Mahmud Jibril, of the opposition National Transitional Council (NTC), was to meet with key US lawmakers.

The United States has yet to recognise the NTC as as the legitimate representative of the Libyan people. France, Italy, Qatar and Gambia have already done so.

© 2011 AFP

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