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Libya: Ready For Elections, But Gaddafi Must Stay

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MUAMMAR GADDAFI


TRIPOLI, April 4 (Reuters) - Libya is ready to hold elections and reform its political system but only its own people can decide whether leader Muammar Gaddafi can stay at the helm, a government spokesman said on Monday.

"We could have any political system, any changes: constitution, election, anything, but the leader has to lead this forward. This is our belief," said Mussa Ibrahim, when asked about the content of negotiations with the West.

"Who are you to decide what Libyans should do? Why don't they (Western powers) say: we need the Libyan people to decide whether the Libyan leader should stay or go, to decide whether to have a different political system or not.

"No one can come to Libya and say: you have to lose your leader or your system or your regime. Who are you to stay that?" He added Libya regretted Italy's decision to back the rebels. (Reporting by Maria Golovnina; Editing by Louise Ireland)

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