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Vol 41 No 21

Published 27th October 2000


Libya

Gadaffi's prime time

Western governments reopen business with Tripoli but the Colonel hasn't changed

Rarely can Moammar el Gadaffi have felt so secure. Even thinking United States politicians now accept that an end to sanctions is inevitable, whoever wins the November presidential election. United Nations sanctions have been suspended, and large cracks are showing in the prosecution case at the Lockerbie trial at Camp Zeist in The Netherlands; a line may soon be drawn under a major cause of friction with the West. The Islamist insurgency of the late 1990s has diminished, and the Libyan state, under pressure to deliver social benefits, is mightily helped by oil at more than US$30 per barrel of crude, which will yield a bumper $11 billion in exports this year.

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