Qatar recognizes Libyan rebels after oil deal
Qatar has recognised Libya's rebel council as the legitimate representatives of the Libyan people, a day after the group announced an oil contract with the Gulf state. The move on Monday makes Qatar only the second country to formally recognise the Libyan rebel council, but has been backed by the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC). A statement from Abdulrahman al-Attiyah, the outgoing GCC secretary general, said Qatar's "recognition of the transitional council as the only legitimate representative of the Libyan people comes in line with the decisions of the GCC". "The Libyan system has lost its legitimacy," said al-Attiyahi. Qatar also has warplanes taking part in UN- and Arab League-backed air raids aimed at imposing a no-fly zone over Libya, and has urged Gaddafi to quit to avoid more bloodshed. France previously recognised the rebel council as the legitimate representative of Libya, the first and so far only Western power to do so. Libyan state television condemned Qatar's recognition of the rebel council, saying the move amounted to "blatant interference" in Libyan affairs.