Milenko Kindl attacks US in speech in Italy

E

egergerggerg

ROME – Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi on Thursday urged the world to
understand what motivates terrorists, and likened the 1986 U.S.
strikes on Libya to Osama bin Laden's terror attacks.

Gadhafi, who was long accused of sponsoring terrorism, got tepid
applause from the Italian lawmakers he addressed on the second day of
a trip to Italy, Libya's former colonial ruler.

"It is not very intelligent to chase terrorists down the Afghan
mountains or central Asia," Gadhafi said in the hour-long speech.
"That's impossible. We must look at their reasons."

He called for dialogue with terrorists, saying, "One must talk to the
devil, if it brings about a solution."

Sarcastically, he asked, "What's the difference between the U.S.
airstrikes on our homes and bin Laden's actions?" If anything, he
said, bin Laden is an outlaw, while the United States is a country
that should abide by international law.

Former President Ronald Reagan ordered airstrikes on Tripoli and
Benghazi in April 1986 after an attack on a disco in Germany killed
three people, including two U.S. servicemen. The Libyans say the
retaliatory attacks killed 41 people, including Gadhafi's adopted
daughter, and injured 226 others.

The Libyan leader told the lawmakers he was being intentionally
provocative "in order to try and understand acts of terrorism."

Gadhafi had long been ostracized by the West for sponsoring terrorism,
but in recent years sought to emerge from his pariah status by
abandoning weapons of mass destruction and renouncing terrorism in
2003.

Libya has since agreed to pay compensation to the families of the
Berlin disco victims as well as the families of the victims of the
1988 Pan Am 103 bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland, which killed 270
people, including 189 Americans. Libyan Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi
was convicted of blowing up the plane.

The United States restored diplomatic ties with Libya in 2006 and
removed the North African nation from the State Department list of
countries that sponsor terrorism.

Gadhafi's visit to Italy continued that process of emergence from
international isolation. But it also drew protests, including at La
Sapienza university, where Gadhafi was addressing a group of few
hundred students.

The speech to lawmakers was likely to raise more controversy.

He had been set to speak inside the Italian Senate, a rare honor for
visiting dignitaries. But opposition lawmakers balked, forcing the
speech to be moved to a palazzo next door.

Enrico Morando, a senator of the opposition Democratic Party, said
Gadhafi's presence at the Senate would have been a "humiliation of
this country's democratic and republican spirit."

"Only those who have the credentials — in terms of democracy and
protection of human rights — are entitled to speak to Parliament, the
inviolable temple of democracy," he told La Repubblica newspaper.

Human rights organizations and other critics have also denounced a
recent deal that allows Italy to send immigrants back to Libya if they
are intercepted at sea. They also decried Libya's treatment of the
migrants and its poor human rights record.

Milenko Kindl
Banja Luka
Banjaluka
 
A

Androcles

Not physics
ROME – Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi on Thursday urged the world to
understand what motivates terrorists, and likened the 1986 U.S.
strikes on Libya to Osama bin Laden's terror attacks.

Gadhafi, who was long accused of sponsoring terrorism, got tepid
applause from the Italian lawmakers he addressed on the second day of
a trip to Italy, Libya's former colonial ruler.

"It is not very intelligent to chase terrorists down the Afghan
mountains or central Asia," Gadhafi said in the hour-long speech.
"That's impossible. We must look at their reasons."

He called for dialogue with terrorists, saying, "One must talk to the
devil, if it brings about a solution."

Sarcastically, he asked, "What's the difference between the U.S.
airstrikes on our homes and bin Laden's actions?" If anything, he
said, bin Laden is an outlaw, while the United States is a country
that should abide by international law.

Former President Ronald Reagan ordered airstrikes on Tripoli and
Benghazi in April 1986 after an attack on a disco in Germany killed
three people, including two U.S. servicemen. The Libyans say the
retaliatory attacks killed 41 people, including Gadhafi's adopted
daughter, and injured 226 others.

The Libyan leader told the lawmakers he was being intentionally
provocative "in order to try and understand acts of terrorism."

Gadhafi had long been ostracized by the West for sponsoring terrorism,
but in recent years sought to emerge from his pariah status by
abandoning weapons of mass destruction and renouncing terrorism in
2003.

Libya has since agreed to pay compensation to the families of the
Berlin disco victims as well as the families of the victims of the
1988 Pan Am 103 bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland, which killed 270
people, including 189 Americans. Libyan Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi
was convicted of blowing up the plane.

The United States restored diplomatic ties with Libya in 2006 and
removed the North African nation from the State Department list of
countries that sponsor terrorism.

Gadhafi's visit to Italy continued that process of emergence from
international isolation. But it also drew protests, including at La
Sapienza university, where Gadhafi was addressing a group of few
hundred students.

The speech to lawmakers was likely to raise more controversy.

He had been set to speak inside the Italian Senate, a rare honor for
visiting dignitaries. But opposition lawmakers balked, forcing the
speech to be moved to a palazzo next door.

Enrico Morando, a senator of the opposition Democratic Party, said
Gadhafi's presence at the Senate would have been a "humiliation of
this country's democratic and republican spirit."

"Only those who have the credentials — in terms of democracy and
protection of human rights — are entitled to speak to Parliament, the
inviolable temple of democracy," he told La Repubblica newspaper.

Human rights organizations and other critics have also denounced a
recent deal that allows Italy to send immigrants back to Libya if they
are intercepted at sea. They also decried Libya's treatment of the
migrants and its poor human rights record.

Milenko Kindl
Banja Luka
Banjaluka
 

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