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Kadhafi says Palestinians should have nuclear weapons

world Updated: Oct 26, 2009 11:18 IST

AFP
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Arab nations and "even the Palestinians" should be allowed nuclear weapons as long as Israel's nuclear ambitions are tolerated, Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi said in an interview.

Israel is widely considered to be the Middle East's sole if undeclared nuclear state, and Kadhafi told Britain's Sky News television that the international community should also allow its Arab neighbours to develop nuclear weapons.

"If the Israelis have the nuclear weapons and the nuclear capabilities, then it is the right of the Egyptians, the Syrians, the Saudis to have the same -- even the Palestinians should have the same because their counterparts, or their opponents, have nuclear capabilities," Kadhafi said in the interview to be aired today.

He added: "And, if we don't want this situation, so we'll have to disarm the Israelis from their nuclear weapons and capabilities."

The Libyan leader said he would oppose Iran acquiring nuclear weapons if it acknowledges such a goal, but noted Tehran's insistence that its nuclear programme is peaceful --something that Western powers dispute.

"Iran, up to now, hasn't said it is manufacturing a nuclear weapon: Iran says it is enriching uranium," Kadhafi said.