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23 February 2011

Gaddafi and friends: in pictures

World leaders may now be condemning the Libyan leader for his use of violence, but it hasn’t always

By Samira Shackle

The photograph above, of Tony Blair embracing Gaddafi during a trip to Libya in 2007, is now notorious. Peter Popham argues today that “throwing down the welcome mat to this monster is one of the scandals of the age”.

brown

Above, Gordon Brown shakes hands with Gaddafi at the G8 summit in 2009.

berlusconi

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Gaddafi embraces the Italian premier, Silvio Berlusconi. Their countries signed a controversial friendship pact in 2008. The two men reportedly spoke on the phone earlier this week.

obama

Also at the G8 summit in 2009, Gaddafi shakes hands with the US president, Barack Obama.

mandela

Here, Gaddafi shares a stage with Nelson Mandela.

putin

Vladimir Putin is pictured with Gaddafi during a 2008 trip to Libya to rebuild Russian-Libyan relations.

zapatero

With Spain’s Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, pictured in 2007, when the Libyan leader travelled to Madrid to sign a series of lucrative deals with political and business leaders.

chirac

Above, the former French president Jacques Chirac is shown during a 2004 trip during which he pledged to build a “true partnership” with Libya.

ben-ali

And, finally. one friend that Gaddafi would rather forget. He is pictured here talking to the Tunisian president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali back in 2000. The other two are Morocco’s King Mohammed VI and the Algerian president, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, still in office today after nearly 12 years.