Abu Dhabi: The United Arab Emirates on Sunday recognised the National Transitional Council in Benghazi of the rebels battling to oust Muammar Gaddafi, the official WAM news agency reported.
The decision to recognise the NTC as the "sole legitimate representative of the Libyan people" was announced by Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed al-Nahayan, who said the UAE would soon open a provisional office in Benghazi.
"The NTC has, in practice, become the representative of Libya and the Libyan people. Therefore, the United Arab Emirates will create relations with it at government level in all questions concerning Libya," the minister said.
The UAE move comes after a meeting on Thursday in Abu Dhabi of the contact group on Libya. The federation becomes the 12th nation to recognise the NTC, after Australia, Britain, France, Gambia, Italy, Jordan, Malta, Qatar, Senegal, Spain and the United States.