This article is from the archive of our partner .

A spokesman for Muammar Qaddafi's regime is telling CNN today that officials from Libya and the United States engaged in "direct, face-to-face talks in Tunisia on Saturday"--a statement one would normally take with a dump truck full of salt. Here's the thing: CNN is also citing U.S. officials, though apparently "Washington says the sole point of the meeting was to repeat its demand that Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi 'must go.'"

"This is a first step. We welcome any further steps. We don't want to be stuck in the past," said Musa Ibrahim, Qaddafi spokesman, in what the network is calling "a brief interview."

CNN notes Ibrahim "would not name the officials who participated" in the alleged discussions, "but three high-level officials told CNN that one of the American envoys who participated in the negotiations was the U.S. ambassador to Libya, Gene Cretz." Back in June, Ibrahim said Qaddafi would not step down as part of any deal to stop a fresh round of NATO bombings.

 

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.