CARACAS: The Venezuelan
government on Monday denied reports that Libyan leader
Muammar Gaddafi was on his way to the South American country
following violent protests against his rule.
Libya’s deputy foreign minister also dismissed the idea.
Attracted to Gaddafi’s revolutionary past, Venezuela’s socialist
President Hugo Chavez also casts himself as an anti-US stalwart on the
international stage, and the pair enjoy warm ties.
Adding to media rumours, British Foreign Secretary William
Hague said earlier he had seen information to suggest Gaddafi had fled
Libya and was on his way to the fellow oil-exporting country.
The Venezuelan government “denies such information”, a senior government source told Reuters.
He added it was unlikely the leader who had ruled Libya for more than 40 years would come to Venezuela.
“It is not planned,” the source said. Speaking on Libyan state
television, Deputy Foreign Minister Khalid Kayem also said the report
was “groundless”, adding: “It has no basis.”
Gaddafi’s rule appeared in increasing jeopardy on Monday as
anti-government protests reached the capital for the first time, leaving
dozens dead at the hands of the security forces. >>>