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France, Germany Urge EU to Talk with Libyan Opposition

French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe on Thursday said Paris and Berlin were calling on their European Union partners to engage in dialogue with Libyan opposition leaders.

Speaking after talks with German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, Juppe said, "We are on the same track to say Colonel Gadhafi is discredited, he must go, we must engage dialogue with the new Libyan representatives."

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Gadhafi Sends Letter to Arab League, Envoys to Europe, Rebels to Send Envoys to Paris

Nicolas Sarkozy will on Thursday meet envoys of Libya's rebel national council which is fighting to oust strongman Moammar Gadhafi, the French president's office said.

Sarkozy would meet Mahmoud Jibril and Ali Essaoui to discuss the "general situation in Libya, in particular the humanitarian situation and the actions of the national council," a statement said.

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French Court Suspends Chirac Graft Trial

A French court Tuesday suspended the trial of former president Jacques Chirac on charges of embezzling public funds as mayor of Paris in the 1990s, following a constitutional challenge.

Chirac, 78, the first former French president ever to go before a judge, is accused of using the money to pay people working for his party ahead of a successful election bid in 1995.

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France's ex-President Chirac on Trial for Corruption

Jacques Chirac on Monday became the first former French president to go on trial as a court heard charges that he embezzled public funds while he was mayor of Paris in the 1990s.

The 78-year-old, one of France's most popular political figures, did not attend the start of the trial that will examine whether he misused public money to pay people working for his party ahead of a successful election bid.

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Britain, France Preparing U.N. Resolution on Libya No-Fly Zone

British Foreign Secretary William Hague confirmed Monday that Britain was working to draft a U.N. resolution on a no-fly zone over Libya to counter Moammar Gadhafi's offensive against rebels, but said it must have regional support and a "clear legal basis".

"At the U.N. Security Council we are working closely with partners on a contingency basis on elements of a resolution on a no-fly zone, making clear the need for regional support, a clear trigger for such a resolution and an appropriate legal basis," Hague told lawmakers in the House of Commons.

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'Spectacular' Cyber Attack Hits French Government

The French finance ministry has shut down 10,000 computers after a "spectacular" cyber attack from hackers using Internet addresses in China, officials and reports said Monday.

The hackers were hunting for documents relating to the Group of 20 (G20) developed and developing nations, which this year is led by France, said Budget Minister Francois Baron, adding that a probe was under way into the attacks.

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French Finance Ministry under Cyber Attack

The French finance ministry confirmed Monday it had come under cyber attack in December from hackers mainly targeting G20 documents.

The attacks sought "chiefly dossiers linked to the G20" and forced the finance ministry to "significantly strengthen its security systems," Dominique Lamiot, secretary general of the finance and budget ministries, told Agence France Presse.

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France Hails Libyan Uprising's 'National Council'

France hailed Sunday the creation of a Libyan "National Council" by the leaders of the armed revolt against Moammer Gadhafi, and said it supported its objectives.

The council met on Saturday in the rebel-held city of Benghazi in eastern Libya, declaring itself the sole representative body for all of Libya, despite Gadhafi's continued control of the capital and much of the West.

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Libya Rebels Say They 'Refused' Talks with British Delegation

Libyan rebels had refused to talk to a British delegation who entered the country without prior arrangement and who were being sent back to London, the rebels' national council said on Sunday.

"We do not know the nature of their mission. We refused to discuss anything with them due to the way they entered the country," spokesman Abdul Hafiz Ghoqa told reporters in the rebel stronghold Benghazi.

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In Egypt, French FM Says Libya Armed Intervention Would Be 'Absolutely Negative'

Any international military intervention in Libya would have "absolutely negative" effects, France's Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said Sunday during a visit to neighbor Egypt.

"France, as well as many of its partners, is not in favor of any Western military intervention in Libya, which would have absolutely negative effects," Juppe told a news conference in Cairo.

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