Cuban leader meets with Gadhafi envoy

Updated: 2011-08-05 13:25


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HAVANA - Raul Castro met here Wednesday with a special envoy of Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi, during which the Cuban leader called for ceasefire and a peaceful solution to the Libya crisis.

The envoy, Libyan Planning and Finance Minister Abdulhafid M. Zlitni, conveyed a message to Castro from Gadhafi, the state-run daily Granma said Thursday.

The Zlitni informed Castro on the "efforts by the Libyan government to face the international isolation campaign imposed by the Western powers."    

For his part, Castro strongly condemned the NATO bombing of Libya for "killing innocent people," the newspaper said.

"Immediate cessation of these acts of war would allow the progress towards a peaceful solution," Castro was quoted as saying, while urging full respect of Libya's independence, territorial integrity and sovereignty over its natural resources.

The Cuban leader also said he supports the role of the African Union (AU) leaders in mediating the Libyan conflict to achieve peace.

The Cuba government has said on several occasions that it opposes the NATO bombings on Libyan soil and frequently issued statements in support of the peace process promoted by the AU.

The newspaper said Zlitni also conveyed Gadhafi's letter to Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, in which Gadhafi thanked Chavez for "his strong support during the NATO-backed rebellion."