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Italy unfreezes Libyan funds

ROME, Aug 31 (KUNA) -- Aiming to give further support to the new Libyan leadership, Italy on Wednesday unblocked EUR 500 million of the Libyan funds.
"Today a final decision was taken to unblock EUR 500 million to give further support to our Libyan friends," Italian news agency ANSA quoted Foreign Minister Franco Frattini as saying during a visit to Hungary.
Billions of euros in investments by Muammar Gaddafi's regime have been frozen in Italian banks as part of successive sanctions.
The government last week said it would release EUR 350 million from these funds for the National Transitional Council (NTC) but Frattini said the sum had been increased.
Before the start of the conflict, the regime had major investments in Italy, including substantial shares in Italy's top bank, UniCredit, and aerospace giant, Finmeccanica. (end) mn.ibi KUNA 312110 Aug 11NNNN