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Darfur rebels ask Kadhafi to defend their interests

5/9/2005 6:20pm

TRIPOLI, May 9 (AFP) -- A rebel delegation from the war-wracked Sudanese region of Darfur asked Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi Monday to defend their interests at an African mini-summit in Cairo next week to which they have not been invited.
Kadhafi received representatives of both the Sudan Liberation Army and the Justice and Equality Movement at his tent in the Al-Azizia district of the capital, an AFP correspondent witnessed.

The rebels asked the Libyan leader for financial support of seven million dollars and funds to compensate their ethnic minority supporters for the ravages of the Sudanese security forces and their Arab militia allies.

They also asked him to look after their interests in Sunday's mini-summit which will gather Sudanese President Omar al-Beshir and his counterparts from Chad, Egypt and Nigeria alongside Kadhafi.

The rebels accused the Sudanese regime of pursuing a "war of extermination" against Darfur's 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.

The press was excluded from the reception before Kadhafi responded to the rebel delegation.

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