An attempt by Hugo Chavez to broker a peace deal between Ghaddafi and the Libyan rebels has failed. Unsorprisingly leader of the rebels have rejected any such approach out of hand.
"No one has told us a thing about it and we are not interested anyway," said the spokesman of the national committee in Benghazi, Abdul Hafif Goga. "We will never negotiate with him."
"Talk of peace is far too late," said a second member of the organising committee, Salwa Bogheiga. "A lot of people have died and there is no one to negotiate with. They lost that right when they started killing people on 17 February."
The rebel committee in Benghazi and the military leadership that jointly run the eastern side of the country insist that they are now too committed to consider any sort of ceasefire. They say that Gaddafi would use it to re-organise his loyalist troops for a major assault on rebel-held cities.
In Chavez’s mind he surely thinks he is doing something constructive. After all he is trying to help out an old friend and ally in the struggle to provide the best rhetoric against the USA.
As the rebel leaders say themselves it is far too late for talks – that time ended when Ghaddafi’s men opened fire. If Chavez is negotiating Ghaddafi’s departure, then fine I suppose. Negotiating anything more to Ghaddafi’s advantage can be forgotten.