Gadhafi storms out of Arab summit in Qatar

Libyan leader denounces the Saudi king for his ties to West, calls himself the "king of kings of Africa" and the "imam of Muslims."

March 30, 2009 17:16
1 minute read.
Gadhafi storms out of Arab summit in Qatar

Gadhafi 248.88. (photo credit: AP)


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Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi stormed out of an Arab summit on Monday after denouncing the Saudi king for his long ties to the West. Gadhafi disrupted the opening Arab League session in Qatar by taking a microphone and criticizing Saudi's King Abdullah, calling him a "British product and American ally." Gadhafi has harbored a grudge against Abdullah since exchanging harsh words during a summit in early 2003 shortly before the US-led invasion of Iraq. "Now after six years, it has proved that you were the liar," Gadhafi said, adding that he now considered their "problem" over and was ready to reconcile. But when the emir of Qatar tried to quiet Gadhafi, the Libyan leader insisted on speaking to the summit. "I am an international leader, the dean of the Arab rulers, the king of kings of Africa and the imam (leader) of Muslims and my international status does not allow me to descend to a lower level," Gadhafi said before getting up and walking out of the hall. A Libyan delegate said Gadhafi went to the Islamic museum in Doha for a tour. The Libyan leaders is known for his unpredictable behavior and it's not clear whether he will rejoin the two-day summit. Gadhafi has angered other Arab leaders with his sharp remarks at past summits. Last year, he poured contempt on fellow Arab leaders at a summit in Syria and warned that they might be overthrown like former Iraqi president, Saddam Hussein. He boycotted the 2007 summit in Saudi Arabia but gave a televised speech saying "Liza" - referring to former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice - had dictated the gathering's agenda. In 2005, he told the summit in Algeria that Palestinians and Israelis are "stupid." A year earlier, he sat smoking cigars on the conference floor of the Tunisia summit to show his contempt for the other leaders.

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