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No Burkina Kadhafi asylum deal, says South Africa

Reuters/Zohra Bensemra
Text by: Jean-Jacques Cornish
2 min

South African officials deny reports that President Jacob Zuma has brokered a deal to allow Moamer Kadhafi temporary asylum in Burkina Faso. Earlier reports said that France and Niger were also involved in guaranteeing the deposed Libyan ruler temporary safe passage out of his homeland.

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A foreign affairs spokesperson in Pretoria says South Africa is not involved in any parallel process in Libya.

THE BATTLE FOR LIBYA

President Jacob Zuma heads the African Union’s high-level committee on Libya.

He has made two trips to Libya offering an African peace solution but the proposal was rejected by rebels because it did not call for Kadhafi’s departure.

The South African government has taken flak at home and on the rest of the continent for supporting the United Nations resolution imposing a no-fly zone over Libya.

Zuma insists this was designed to protect Libyan civilian lives.

He maintains Nato’s aerial bombardment of Libya exceeds the UN Security Council’s mandate, adding that it’s used as a pretext for regime change.

Foreign affairs spokesperspo Clayson Monyela says Zuma is not involved in any efforts outside the AU proposal for a mutually inclusive peace deal in Libya.

This after reports – attributed to Western intelligence sources - that Libya’s transitional government signed off on a deal involving France, Niger and Burkina Faso allowing the toppled dictator 72 hours in Niger.

The reports say France, on behalf of Nato, made sure the 200-vehicle convoy allegedly carrying Kadhafi into Niger was shadowed by fighter jets and not attacked.

The reports say Zuma has played a key role in looking for a safe haven for Kadhafi.

Latest reports from Niger deny that Kadhafi was in the country and Burkina Faso officials say he has not been offered any form of asylum.

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