Gadhafi’s Son, Menem Talk As U.S. Balks at Libyan U.N. Council Seat

The son of Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi met with Argentine President Carlos Menem last week during a trip to “search of investment opportunities.”

Libya has been seeking Argentine assistance in lifting U.N. sanctions imposed after Libya refused to extradite terrorists linked to the 1988 bombing of a Pan Am flight over Lockerbie, Scotland.

Libya is also seeking a seat on the U.N. Security Council, a move that the United States wants to thwart.

Alsadi Muammar Gadhafi, 24, who is not a government official, talked with Menem for half an hour at the presidential residence, north of the capital.

The younger Gadhafi said his government is looking for opportunities to invest state funds in Argentina.

Trade between Argentina and Libya is limited to commodities.

The July 23 meeting follows a visit earlier this year to Argentina by an official Libyan delegation. At that time, the Libyans asked Argentina to approach the U.N. Security Council about lifting sanctions against Libya. Argentina agreed, and later reported to Tripoli that “there was no disposition on the part of the U.N. to ease sanctions against Libya.”

Argentina had joined in the sanctions ordered by the United Nations in 1992 after Libya refused to extradite the terrorists. At the time, Menem had the Libyan ambassador expelled from the country and withdrew the Argentine ambassador to Libya.

Meanwhile, the United States is stepping up its campaign against the possible presence of Libya on the U.N. Security Council.

Libya is in rotation for a seat on the council, which has five permanent seats and 10 that are elected for two-year terms.

The Security Council has the primary responsibility within the United Nations to maintain international peace and security in addition to investigating any dispute hat threatens that effort.

The council also directs the various peacekeeping forces around the world.

“I believe there are enough votes to keep Libya off of the Security Council,” Robert Pelletreau, assistant secretary of state for Near East and South Asian affairs, said in Washington on Wednesday.

“We do not believe it is appropriate for a state which is itself not complying with the resolutions of the Security Council to have a seat on the Security Council,” he told a congressional committee.

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