Gadhafi eyes defense alliance for Africa, SouthAm

Feb 16, 2009
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Gadhafi eyes defense alliance for Africa, SouthAm - Yahoo! Finance

Gadhafi eyes defense alliance for Africa, SouthAm

PORLAMAR, Venezuela (AP) -- Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi called for a NATO-like defense alliance for Africa and South America as leaders from the two continents agreed to link up to gain more clout as economic and political blocs.

Gadhafi and Venezuela's Hugo Chavez led nearly 30 presidents in calling for stronger "south-south" ties at a two-day summit ending Sunday that was the Libyan ruler's first visit to Latin America.

"We have to form a NATO for the south," Gadhafi said Saturday. "And that's not a terrorist action. We have a right."

He denounced the U.N. Security Council as an elite club where nations such as Libya have no voice, and called for the two continents to unite to demand change.

Chavez said Venezuela is looking into energy investments in Africa and called for joint mining projects, saying the two regions together have enormous potential.

"There will no longer be a unipolar world," Chavez said, referring to U.S. dominance. "In the 21st century, the African Union and South America will be truly great powers."

Seven South American leaders signed an agreement to create a regional development bank with $20 billion in startup capital, and Chavez offered to help create a "South-South bank" with African countries in the future.

"We're 65 countries with more than 1 billion inhabitants who want to be heard," said Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who agreed with Gadhafi that the Security Council has "lost relevance."

Leaders were expected to call for substantial U.N. reforms as the gathering wrapped up Sunday.

The meeting on Venezuela's Margarita Island addressed a wide range of concerns, from hunger in Africa to the economic crisis and a common response to climate change. Leaders discussed plans for joint ventures in oil, mining, agriculture and other areas.

The summit gave Chavez an opportunity to increase his influence in Africa while criticizing U.S. and European influence in poorer nations.

Gadhafi echoed Chavez's concerns about the world's top economic powers, saying, without naming countries, "They think the planet is divided into two parts -- masters and slaves. The masters are in the north and in the south are the slaves."

Gadhafi, who has ruled Libya since he seized power in a 1969 coup, has sought a greater leadership role internationally in recent years and is currently chairman of the African Union.

"South-south" cooperation was a buzzword at the summit, which brought together both the African Union and the South American bloc Unasur.

African leaders included Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe, South Africa's Jacob Zuma and Algeria's Abdelaziz Bouteflika met eight South American presidents from Ecuador's Rafael Correa to Chile's Michelle Bachelet.

Bolivian President Evo Morales was one of several Chavez-allied leftists who called a socialist-oriented approach essential to confronting problems from poverty to global warming.

"Who is responsible?" Morales asked leaders -- referring to climate change, which is blamed for vanishing glaciers in Bolivia and throughout the Andes. "Capitalism is the enemy of humanity."


Super Mod
Mar 24, 2009
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If Gaddafi sticks around too much with Chavez, he is going to lose his recently found status in the eyes of the west.
NATO of Africa and south am sounds a joke when others are discussing the viability and relevance of NATO itself.


Sanathan Pepe
Sep 18, 2009
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What Gadhafi is effectively doing is blocking Africa's path to development. It's common knowledge that Africa's upbringing can only be carried out when the US, EU, China, and India, etc. participate extensively in the process, set up industries, build infrastructure, improve irrigation and farming, and limit the spread of radical elements in north Africa. A cohesive, rigid Africa will only work against the cause, and ensure that people like Gadhafi stay in power, as the masses continue to starve.

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