Luke Harding and Julian Borger
Aug 24, 2011
Muammar Gaddafi has vowed “martyrdom or victory” hours after Libyan rebels swarmed into his fortified compound in Tripoli.
Following a day of heavy fighting in the Libyan capital, opposition fighters broke into Gaddafi’s walled citadel, Bab al-Aziziya, where they were seen stamping on a gilded bronze head of the deposed despot and setting fire to his famous tent in a cathartic end to his 42-year rule.
But in an audio recording released to a Libyan television station, the dictator called his retreat from the compound a “tactical move”. Gaddafi, who has not been seen in public for weeks, told al-Rai TV that Libyans must “cleanse the capital”, and claimed he had made a discreet tour of Tripoli and felt the city was not in danger.
“All Libyans must be present in Tripoli, young men, tribal men and women must sweep through Tripoli and comb it for traitors. I have been out a bit in Tripoli discreetly, without being seen by people, and ‚Ä¶ I did not feel that Tripoli was in danger,” he said.
This article was posted: Wednesday, August 24, 2011 at 3:24 am