Politics: FM Droutsas participates in first meeting of 'Libya Contact Group'

The "Contact Group on Libya" held its first meeting in Doha, Qatar, in the presence of the UN secretary general and with the participation of Greek Foreign Minister Dimitris Droutsas, who termed an imperative need the finding of a political solution to the Libyan crisis and expressed support for an increased coordinating role by the UN in this process.

Droutsas met on the sidelines of the meeting with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon with whom he discussed, apart from the Libyan issue, the Cyprus question and the issue of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (fYRoM). The Greek minister also had contacts with counterparts of his, the representative of the "National Transitional Council of Libya" (rebels) M. Djibrill and the UN 's special emissary Hatib.

Droutsas said in his address that Greece's position had been from the beginning that the military action undertaken for the implementation of the resolutions 1970 and 1973 for Libya, although necessary for the protection of civilians, are not enough for the finding of a permanent solution. He added that the element of time is crucial and that the diplomatic efforts that are being made by various sides must be intensified, stressiung that the UN must and can have a leading and coordinating role in this.

As regards the issue of humanitarian aid, the foreign minister stressed that Crete can constitute an ideal hub for passing through this humanitarian aid, due to its proximity and the existence of suitable infrastructures.

In statements after the meeting, Droutsas said "with the invitation to Greece for participation in the Contact Group for Libya, the considerable role of our country in developments in the region is recognised. Today's meeting proved the unity of the international community. We are continuing to convey with a unified voice the message for an immediate ceasefire, for the immediate end of violence against the Libyan people. Greece, from the very beginning has stressed the need for the finding of a political solution and the efforts of the international community in this direction are taking place in an increasingly coordinated way. Greece has submitted some time ago its own thoughts and proposals and I can say with satisfaction that they are reflected fully and even constitute the basis for the thoughts expressed in this meeting today."

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