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Russian Report Suggests Qaddafi Willing To Step Down If Protected


Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi (file photo)

Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi (file photo)

The Russian newspaper "Kommersant," quoting an unnamed Russian official, has reported that Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi is willing to resign if promised protection.

The daily quoted an unidentified senior Russian official as saying the embattled Libyan leader has been "sending signals" that he would step down if provided with security.

The report comes a day after top Russian officials met with NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen and South African President Jacob Zuma to discuss ways to end the violence in Libya.

The popular uprising against Qaddafi's rule has turned into the bloodiest of all the antigovernment movements shaking the Arab world.

The United Nations approved NATO intervention meant to help protect civilians three months ago, but efforts to end the violence have so far been unsuccessful.

Russia has been critical of NATO involvement and has called for a cease-fire.

compiled from agency reports

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