QATAR: Libya's Kadafi bashes Saudi king at Doha summit
As usual, Libyan leader raised eyebrows Monday with his incendiary but hilarious remarks at the Arab summit in Doha.
As the Emir of host Qatar welcomed Saudi King Abdullah ibn Abdulaziz al Saud, Libyan President Moammar Kadafi interrupted him addressing the Saudi king, saying:
"I seize the opportunity to tell my brother Abdullah, you have been evasive and scared of confrontation for six years. I want to assure you today not to be scared. I am telling you after six years it was proved that lies stand behind you and your grave awaits you. You were created by Britain and protected by the U.S. I consider the personal issue that lasted between you and me is over and I am ready to visit you as well as receive you."
He spoke in a heavy Libyan accent, and many reporters at first could not understand what he meant to say. Shortly afterward his statement was posted on the website of Libya's official news agency.
The Qatari emir tried hard to contain the situation by silencing Kadafi, but all his efforts proved futile. Later, the emir sought to reconcile both parties in a closed, tripartite meeting.
This is not the first time Kadafi clashed with King Abdullah. In the 2003 Arab summit, Kadafi criticized the Saudi king for hosting American forces ahead of the U.S. war on Iraq. The latter called Kadafi "a liar."
"Your grave awaits you," the Saudi king added.
The strain in Libyan-Saudi relations worsened after allegations emerged that Libyan intelligence services plotted to assassinate the Saudi king. Last year, Kadafi boycotted an Arab summit held in Riyadh.
In another Arab League mishap, a grumpy Jordanian King Abdullah II decided to leave Doha today in protest of the "low-level" welcome at the airport he received and the postponement of his opening statement, according to Jordanian officials who asked not to be named.
The king was received at the Doha airport by the crown prince of Qatar rather than his counterpart, the emir.
-- Noha El-Hennawy in Doha, Qatar
Photo: Libyan president speaking today at the opening session of the Arab summit at Doha. Credit: Associated Press / Qatari News Agency / HO