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October 26, 2002


Libya quits Arab League. Perhaps the AL not doing enough to eliminate Israel?
Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher expressed his confidence in Libya's role in the Arab world, saying that the request to withdraw from the Arab League (AL) was out of Libya's frustration with the Arab situation.
Meanwhile, Libya yesterday notified the AL of plans to leave the pan-Arab body, state news agency Jana quoted a government source as saying.
No reason was immediately given for the decision, but Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi asked Libyans in September to quit the league in protest against the 'Arab failure' in the face of Israel and the United States.
AL spokesman Hesham Youssef said that the Cairo-based body had not yet been notified officially.
In a further development, AL Secretary-General Amr Moussa said he would make an "urgent" visit to Libya, hours after Tripoli announced its intention to pull out of the 22-member pan-Arab group.
Moussa, who is currently on a visit to Portugal, said he was returning to Cairo and would go straight to Libya "to resolve this crisis."
Moussa, who enjoys wide respect among Libyan officials for his sharp criticism of Israel, travelled to Libya last month in an attempt to calm Gaddafi's anger.