Report: Kadhafi, Mubarak to hold summit after diplomatic row resolved
Egypt and Libya lifted restrictions on travelers crossing their common border that were imposed two weeks ago during a diplomatic row, the border authorities disclosed, according to AFP. Meanwhile, an Arabic newspaper reported Thursday that Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi is set to arrive in Egypt to hold talks with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.
Reportedly angry at Egyptian criticism over its unilateral move late last year to renounce weapons of mass destruction (WMD), Libya on January 9 started requiring Egyptians to present visas, work permits or proof of possession of 350 dollars.
Egypt retaliated with similar measures.
However, a border official said "all restrictive measures" affecting Egyptian and Libyan travelers that were imposed January 9 were "lifted from midnight on Wednesday" (2200 GMT).
"The Egyptian and Libyan authorities decided to return to the measures which were in place before between the two countries," the official said, AFP reported.
The move followed a high-level Egyptian delegation's meeting with Kadhafi in Tripoli on Wednesday.
Tripoli imposed the restrictions after Egyptian newspapers, including those run by the government, said Libya's unilateral decision on WMD weakened Arab attempts to force Israel to abandon its nuclear arsenal
In addition, Mubarak himself was critical. In an interview with Egyptian radio on January 1, Mubarak voiced surprise at Kadhafi's decision, saying he knew "personally" that Libya did not possess WMD and suggested that Khadafi just wanted to feel important.
"The problem is that everyone wants to feel very important in the region, whether it is Libya or another" country, the Egyptian leader added.
However, on Thursday the London-based Asharq al Awsat daily, citing "Libyan and Egyptian sources", said Kadhafi accepted an official invitation from Mubarak to visit in Cairo. The sources said the summit will take place in the upcoming weeks, before the Egyptian president leaves for a tour in the USA.
A Libyan source told the newspaper that Tripoli promised to Cairo that there are no plans to allow US or British forces to deploy on Libyan soil. Egypt expressed its concern about comments by Kadhafi's son in this regard. (Albawaba.com)
© 2004 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)