Russia accuses NATO of hindering political process in Libya

Russian envoy to NATO Dmitry Rogozin on Wednesday accused NATO of undermining Libyan opposition efforts to start talks with Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, according to local media reports.

In an interview with the Russia-24 television channel, Rogozin said both Tripoli and Benghazi realized the conflict in the north African country had gone too far and it must be stopped.

"But it is impossible to start political process while NATO airstrikes continue," Rogozin said, adding that "NATO has long gone beyond what was expected and ordered by the 1973 resolution on Libya."

"Now, common sense dictates that NATO must stop its actions and, on top of this, not get involved in this civil war on the side of one of the parties," he said.

On missile defense cooperation between Russia and NATO, Rogozin said the potential of talks between the two sides "has not been exhausted yet."

Rogozin also warned that, unless a compromise was found before the NATO summit in May 2012, Moscow should start "to prepare itself for a response step by step."

[Source: Xinhua, Moscow, 06Jul11]

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