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Brussels blog by some wire service journalists

Reports say Libyan oil chief defects to rebels

By NICOLE WINFIELD and DON MELVIN

Shukri Ghanem

ROME – Libyan oil chief Shukri Ghanem said Wednesday he had defected and now supports the rebels, in a major blow to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi, news reports said, as NATO and its partners decided to extend their Libya mission for another 90 days.

“In this situation you can no longer work, so I have left my country and my work to unite myself with the choice of young Libyans to fight for a democratic country,” the ANSA news agency quoted Ghanem as saying in Rome.

Ghanem said he had left the regime two weeks ago and arrived in Rome on Tuesday. The Italian Foreign Ministry said it had no comment on the report.

READ THE FULL STORY HERE.

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Don Melvin

Slobodan Lekic

Raf Casert

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