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Africa's off-on-off summit looks on again with rebel compromise

African foreign ministers meeting in Libya have devised a new compromise that they hope will ensure the opening on schedule (Aug. 5) of this year's summit meeting of the Organization of African Unity.

The stumbling block has been whether the anti-Moroccan Polisario guerrillas from Western Sahara should be allowed to attend the summit as OAU members. Morocco and its friends have threatened to wreck the meeting by denying it a quorum, should the Polisario representatives be seated.

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The latest compromise formula allows Polisario representatives to participate in this week's OAU foreign ministers' meeting, on the understanding that they will stay away from the summit in Tripoli, the Libyan capital, next week.

Although Libya confirmed that Polisario is willing to go along with this, there is no guarantee that, come Aug. 5, the participants (including the hitherto obdurate Polisario) will abide by the planned scenario.

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