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Arab League hopes Libya summit will help end Darfur crisis

5/15/2005 8:41am

CAIRO, May 14 (AFP) -- The Arab League said it hoped a mini-summit on Darfur that Libya is to host on Monday will contribute to the search for peace in the war-torn western region of Sudan.
"I hope that the Libya summit will represent an important step on the way to achieving a solution to the situation in Darfur," said Hossam Zaki, spokesman for Arab League chief Amr Mussa.

He added that he hoped a Darfur settlement would "reflect positively on Sudan's unity, security and sovereignty."

Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi announced Wednesday that Tripoli would host the mini-summit on Darfur.

Bringing together the leaders of Chad, Egypt, Nigeria, Gabon and Sudan as well as Libya and the African Union, but not the rebels, the gathering had initially been due to be held in Egypt's Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh.

Kadhafi has invited Darfur's two main ethnic minority rebel groups -- the Sudan Liberation Movement and the Justice and Equality Movement -- to participate in the talks.

The rebels have accused the Arab-dominated regime in Khartoum of pursuing a "war of extermination" against Darfur's indigenous minorities since they launched their uprising two years ago.

As many as 300,000 people have died in the conflict and more than two million more fled their homes, according to a British parliamentary committee report.

Zaki said Mussa will leave Cairo for Tripoli Sunday to attend the summit.

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