Confusion reigns in Libya over whether Moammar Gaddafi offered rebel leaders a peace deal or not.
According to Al Jazeera, opposition groups in the eastern city of Benghazi are considering a conditional proposal from Gaddafi that he will step down from power in exchange for various concessions.
However, Libyan state television denied reports that Gaddafi sought any kind of compromise agreement with the opposition. A source at the foreign ministry even derided the notion as absolute nonsense.
Reportedly, Gaddafi sent an aide to Benghazi on Sunday night to talk about a negotiated exit under which the Libyan leader would be able to keep his wealth and avoid prosecution for war crimes.
Abdel Jalil Mustapha, the chief of the opposition National Council, reportedly rejected the offer, however added that the council may consider a deal after he leaves power.
We rejected this [deal],” said Mustafa Gheriani, a media officer for the council.“We are not negotiating with someone who spilled Libyan blood and continues to do so. Why would we trust the guy today?
However, Jadallah Azous Al-Talhi, a former Libyan prime minister, appeared on state TV on Monday and pleaded with opposition leaders in Benghazi to give a chance to national dialogue to resolve this crisis, to help stop the bloodshed, and not give a chance to foreigners to come and capture our country again.
Al-Talhi’s appearance on state-controlled TV strongly suggests it has Gaddafi’s backing.