Berlusconi cautious over Gaddafi exile

By Agence France-Presse
Tuesday, March 1, 2011 8:51 EDT
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ROME — Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi called for caution regarding the crisis in Libya and Moamer Kadhafi’s possible exile, saying the situation was “confused” and constantly changing.

“We must wait and see. It’s best not to enter into specifics just yet,” Berlusconi said in an interview with Il Messaggero daily.

The premier, who has been in touch with US President Barack Obama, the head of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy and UN head Ban Ki-Moon, said Italy would “follow the line taken by the international community.”

“We have many interests in the area as well as being geographically very close to Libya,” Berlusconi said, adding that he didn’t believe relations between the two countries would degenerate should Kadhafi fall from power.

“We are friends of the Libyan people. Whatever government the Libyans choose I believe it will uphold the close ties with Italy, it’s people and its businesses.”

Ties between Italy and Libya were strengthened in 2008 after a friendship agreement that eased tensions between the Mediterranean country and its former colony. Since then, Italy has become Libya’s biggest trade partner.

Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
AFP journalists cover wars, conflicts, politics, science, health, the environment, technology, fashion, entertainment, the offbeat, sports and a whole lot more in text, photographs, video, graphics and online.
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