Libyan envoy due in Greece for talks Thursday

AP News
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Posted: Mar 09, 2011 5:36 PM
Libyan envoy due in Greece for talks Thursday

Greece's foreign ministry said a Libyan envoy will hold talks in Athens Thursday with Deputy Foreign Minister Dimitris Dollis.

Mohamed Tahir Siala's visit was arranged in agreement with European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, a foreign ministry statement said Wednesday. It comes ahead of a meeting of EU foreign ministers on Thursday to discuss the situation in Libya.

A Greek source said the request for the meeting came via the Libyan embassy, and a similar request has also been sent to a number of other European countries. The source asked not to be named as he was not authorized to discuss the matter with the press.

The ministry said there would be no statements to journalists after the meeting. It provided no further detail.

Greece has traditionally good relations with Libya and its leader Moammar Gadhafi, with whom Prime Minister George Papandreou held talks on economic cooperation during a visit to Tripoli last summer.

The southern island of Crete has served as an evacuation hub for thousands of foreign workers _ mostly Chinese _ ferried out Libya by a relay of Greek ships over the past few days.