Nicolas Sarkozy is planning a "friends of Libya" conference to chart out a political future for the country, beyond the rule of Moamer Gaddafi, a French news magazine reported Tuesday.
In an interview with L'Express weekly, extracts of which were posted on the magazine's website, Sarkozy said France would organize "in the coming weeks" a "large conference ... to build the country's future.", dpa reported.
He did not specify when or where such a conference would be held, but said it should bring together "all the political components" of the country, "including, if necessary, members of Gaddafi's regime, on condition they have broken away from him and have no blood on their hands."
The international military campaign against Gaddafi's regime is coming under increased criticism for failing to dislodge the belligerent leader after a month and a half of bombardments.
Sarkozy, who campaigned vigorously for intervention to protect towns and cities that have risen up against Gaddafi, was upbeat about the progress, saying the military situation was "improving" and that a political solution "should be a matter of a few months."
He also defended the coalition's intensification of the airstrikes, which according to the Libyan government, killed one of Gaddafi's sons and three of his grandsons at the weekend.
"It's the only way of forcing Gaddafi to return his soldiers to their barracks," he told L'Express, reiterating that the coalition was not out to assassinate Gaddafi.