Top US official visits Benghazi

August 21st, 2011 - 9:54 am ICT by IANS  

Washington, Aug 21 (IANS) US Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Jeffery Feltman paid a visit to the Libyan rebels’ stronghold of Benghazi Saturday, vowing to help ouster the Muammar Gaddafi regime, a media report said.

No further details of the meeting between Feltman and Mustafa Abdul Jalil, head of the rebel National Transitional Council, were revealed at a press conference after their meeting, Xinhua reported.

Jalil expressed the rebels’ gratitude to the UN, the European Union and the African Union for their support.

An uprising that began in Libya in February against Gaddafi’s 40-year rule has already claimed thousands of lives, with Gaddafi’s troops maintaining their hold in Tripoli, and the rebel group claiming its stake in Benghazi.

Thousands of people have left the country since NATO airstrikes “to protect Libyan civilians” began March 19 following a UN resolution.

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