Spain denies report on war ship presence off Libyan coast

Tripoli- Libya (PANA) -- Spain Saturday denied a report credited to a Madrid-based newspaper "El Pais," alleging that the country had sent a war frigate to patrol the Libyan coast as part of a "Ballistic Defence Project," the Libyan news agency (JANA), has reported.
The agency quoted the Spanish Ambassador in Tripoli, Tapia Jose-Louis, as having informed the Libyan Foreign Relations and International Co-operation Ministry that the newspaper report was unfounded.
The envoy was quoted as saying that the Spanish government had no intention of engaging in such an endeavour.
The Ambassador blamed "certain groups," which he did not name, for being behind the false report.
He said such groups were seeking to benefit from a possible rift between Spain and Libya.
JANA said the Libyan Foreign Ministry had summoned the Spanish Ambassador in Tripoli over the newspaper report.
He was asked to seek clarification from his government, because Tripoli would not accept the presence of foreign war ships on its territorial waters, which would constitute a direct threat to its national security.

19 august 2001 17:21:00

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