Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi has likened the conflict in Sudan's Darfur region to a "quarrel over a camel" that has become an international issue.
Mr Gaddafi is due to host Darfur peace talks this weekend
Local leaders could have solved the tribal dispute if it were not for the economic interests of international powers in the region, he explained.
Mr Gaddafi is due to host peace talks between Darfuri rebel groups and government representatives on Saturday.
But another top rebel faction has just announced it will not attend the talks.
Ahmed Abdel Shafie - leader of the prominent Sudan Liberation Movement splinter group which represents the Fur tribe - said he was not going as the atmosphere was not "conducive" for success.
Some 200,000 people have died in the conflict and an estimated two million people have fled their homes.
Mr Gaddafi made the comments while addressing students at Cambridge University in the UK via video link from Libya's capital, Tripoli.
"You might laugh if I say that the main reason of this issue is a camel," he said.
"Africa has thousands of issues - they are about water, about grass - and Africa is divided into 50 countries, and the tribes are divided amongst so many countries, although they belong to each other.
"The problem we are having now is that we politicise such problems between tribes."
He said that in Darfur the issue had been politicised because "there are super powers who are interested in oil and other things".
He also said that the crisis had been prolonged by international aid agencies because the local population increasingly depended on the support it received and, therefore, wanted the conflict to continue.
Meanwhile several Darfur rebel groups - at least seven factions - are gathering in Sudan's southern city of Juba in an attempt to find a common negotiating position with the Khartoum government ahead of the Libya peace talks.
But Mr Shafie says his faction will not attend the talks and accused the United Nations and the African Union - who are leading the negotiations - of sabotaging the process of unity by insisting the talks must start on Saturday.
The BBC's Amber Henshaw in Juba says his decision could make any chance of success in Libya look even more remote.
The other key rebel who represents the Fur tribe, Abdul Wahed al-Nur, has made it clear from the outset that he will not attend.
Five other smaller factions are also refusing to participate. They say they need more time to find a united position.
Peace talks in 2006 failed to end the four-and-a-half year conflict.