As negotiations wind down, a glimmer of hope for peace in Libya has emerged Friday and WPIX-TV reporter Larry Mendte was the first to break the news.
Although former U.S. Rep. Curt Weldon was not able to meet face-to-face with Libya's leader Muammar Gaddafi, he is set to meet the country's prime minister, who will give him a wax-sealed document.
Weldon has been entrusted to hand-deliver the classified document, which are intended for U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, marking the biggest step forward between Libya and Western nations. It also is the most direction communication between the prime minister and Clinton.
WPIX-TV learned Weldon received the documents at about 7:30 a.m. EST. He and his delegation will are set to leave the country and head to the US Ambassador's office in neighboring Tunisia,
The documents are said to have a list of U.S. concessions the Libyan government has agreed to, a call for more talks and a special envoy to meet for further negotiations, WPIX-TV has learned.
What is not in the wax-sealed document is the proposal for Gaddafi to step down.
Weldon was personally invited to Libya by Gaddafi, himself, who sent Weldon a letter and wanted his help in brokering a deal with NATO and the United States to bring peace to Libya.
Gaddafi unexpectedly canceled the face-to-face meeting on Thursday, despite a successful meeting between Weldon and Gaddafi's chief of staff.
Other points of major disappointment for Weldon and his delegation of international rights officials are the unsuccessful negotiations for the release of a Libyan woman and two American journalists.
Iman al-Obeidi of Libya made international headlines when she told foreign reporters she was detained and gang-raped for two days by Gaddafi's soldiers before she was able to escape. She appeared beaten and badly bruised, and showed international journalists injuries to her inner thighs.
As she was still with foreign journalists, Al-Obeidi was suddenly approached by a man who called her a traitor. She was dragged into a white unmarked van and has since been in government custody.
Up until yesterday, Weldon believed Al-Obeidi would be able to leave with him and be able to go home.
James Foley, a reporter GlobalPost, and Clare Morgana Gillis, a reporter for USA TODAY, TheAtlantic.com and The Christian Science Monitor, were arrested in eastern Libya by Gaddafi's men for apparently not having proper credentials.
They are described as being in good condition and WPIX-TV has learned that although Weldon was not able to negociate their release, the pair may be released within the next 24 hours.
Although this was not an official government trip, the White House, State Department and Congress have not discouraged Weldon's meetings and with Friday's developments, it seems Weldon's trip was a step in the right direction.
WPIX-TV has learned that Weldon's mission to Libya is not the only meeting intended on ending the conflict in Libya.
The Turkish government is set to meet with Libya's top officials and ther have been several so-called "back channel" meetings with European nations.
A meeting between members of the African Union and Gaddafi is scheduled for Saturday.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times