The 3rd Session of the Africa-Europe Summit has opened in the Libyan capital, Tripoli.
Opening the first summit in 3 years between the two continents, Libyan leader, Colonel Muammar Gaddafi reopened old wounds between former colonial powers and nations marking half a century of independence when he said the European nations should return the wealth they stole from Africa during the colonial era.
Reports from Tripoli say thatÂ Africa squared up to fight for better economic deals with the European Union, as Colonel Gaddafi warned that the continent is ready to do business elsewhere and to seal a new and equal partnership with anyone.
Colonel Gaddafi told leaders of 80 nations gathered in the high-rise seaside Libyan capital for the 2-day talks that Africa has failed in its economic partnership with Europe, which has shown high levels of reluctance to create a win-win situation based on mutual interest, not on exploitation.
The summit observed that the leaders of France, Germany and Italy did not attend the meeting, signaling their lack of commitment on African issues.
The Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, President Robert Mugabe is attending the summit.
The summit, which is being held for the third time after in Egypt 2001 and then Portugal in 2007, will focus on poverty reduction, peace and security and post colonial subjugation, among other issues.
Since Zimbabwe has been under illegal west-imposed sanctions for the past decade, it is hoped the summit will influence European nations to consider the lifting of sanctions to ease the plight of the Zimbabwean populace.Â