BRUSSELS - The European Union will send envoys to the rebel-controlled Libyan city of Benghazi on Tuesday, part of efforts by Western countries to establish better contacts with Muammar Gaddafi's opponents.
With French and British forces leading moves by NATO to drive Gaddafi from power through air strikes and other measures that have bolstered opposition forces, work is also going on to build a better outstanding of who the rebels are and what sort of backing they have within Libya's broader society.
As well as meeting rebel leaders, some of whom have already met senior EU officials in Brussels, the EU envoys will hold meetings with community leaders in the northeast, a spokesman for EU foreign affairs chief, Catherine Ashton, said.
"There is a mission going to Libya tomorrow. It is a listening exercise," spokesman Michael Mann told reporters.