Tripoli, Feb 27 (ANI): Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who has been condemned worldwide over his connections with Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, had reportedly phoned the Libyan leader twice early this week, to urge him to stop killing protesters of his regime.
Blair had made the phone calls on Friday, the day Gaddafi appeared in public and urged his supporters to "defend the nation" against the uprising and "crush the enemy" behind it, The Independent reports.
Gaddafi, however, appears to have not paid much heed to Blair's appeals because even yesterday, reports had suggested that the dictator was carrying out his threat to arm supporters to strike back against the uprising.
According to Whitehall sources, Blair made an initial call to the Libyan President, who has ordered helicopter gunships to fire on protesters he described as "rats" and "cockroaches".
Blair had made the initial call after consultations with the British Foreign Office. Blair was told that the UK Government would prefer the Libyan President to step down, and so he agreed to phone him again and transmit that message.
Amid tensions, British Prime Minister David Cameron had ordered an SAS rescue mission to pick up 150 citizens stranded in the remote oil fields south of the port of Benghazi.
Earlier, Gaddafi's son had urged Blair to utilise his "diplomatic skills" in helping his father's regime in 'crushing their enemies'.
A close ally of Saif Gaddafi had reportedly urged Blair to help Libya to attain stability.
"He is peacemaker in the Middle East, and should be able to use his talents for peacemaking here. We need his diplomatic skills now as we set about crushing our enemies," the official, who is also a senior figure in the Libyan regime, said. (ANI)