Venezuela's Chavez Trying to Play Libya Peacemaker

Gadhafi has accepted his mediation plan, but not rebels
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 3, 2011 11:57 AM CST
Libyan relatives of rebel fighters killed in fighting with troops loyal to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi attend a mass funeral in Ajdabiya, eastern Libya, Thursday.   (AP Photo/Kevin Frayer)
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(Newser) – His isn't the first name to come to mind as a peacemaker, but Venezuela's Hugo Chavez is floating a proposal to negotiate a solution in Libya on behalf of his old pal Moammar Gadhafi. It's not clear how seriously the plan will be taken by the outside world, but Gadhafi has accepted it and the Arab League says it's at least "under consideration," reports Reuters.

If nothing else, just the possibility of mediation has eased oil prices, notes the AP. Chavez wants to send some kind of an international commission to Libya—presumably one that doesn't include the US—to bring together Gadhafi and protesters. Details are sketchy, and anti-government rebels don't sound enthused, reports the Guardian. "No one has told us a thing about it and we are not interested anyway," said one spokesman in Benghazi. "We will never negotiate with him." Meanwhile, the violence continues.

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