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Libya barred from prestigious Davos meeting

The organisers of next year's meeting of the World Economic Forum (Wef) have barred Libya amid an ongoing diplomatic crisis with Switzerland.

No guests from Libya have been invited and will be invited to the annual conference of politicians and business leaders in Davos at the end of January, according to a senior Wef official.

"There won't be any participants from Libya as long as bilateral relations between Switzerland and Libya have not normalized," Kai Bucher said.

He added the move was unusual and in contradiction with the policy of the Wef.

Last year, Seif-al-Islam Gaddafi, a son of the Libyan leader, visited the Davos gathering and held talks with Swiss Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey on the sidelines of the conference.

However, it is not known if he or other Libyan citizens applied for participation in the 2010 meeting.

Relations between Libya and Switzerland have been seriously strained over the temporary arrest in 2008 of Hannibal Gaddafi and his wife in Geneva over accusations of mistreating members of their household staff.

Since July 2008 Libya refuses two Swiss businessmen in Tripoli to leave the African country and accused them of violating visa and tax regulations.

swissinfo.ch with agencies


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