Libya - 
Article published the Tuesday 22 February 2011 - Latest update : Tuesday 22 February 2011

Kadhafi insists he's still in Libya

Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi speaks on state television, 22 February 2011.
Reuters/Libya TV

By RFI

Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi made a brief appearance on state television early on Tuesday to deny rumours that he had fled to Venezuela. He said he would meet the crowds in Tripoli's Green Square, while protesters complained of gunmen firing indiscriminately in what they described as a massacre.

It's the first time Kadhafi has spoken publically since protests began a week ago.

Speaking from what appeared to be his residence in Tripoli, he urged the public not to believe the "dogs" reporting that he had left Libya.

Libya's state-owned TV station Al-Jamahiriya Two has since denied all allegations of massacres carried out against protesters, calling the reports "psychological warfare".

Human rights groups say the death toll from the violence is between 200 and 400.

Eastern cities including Al-Bayda and Benghazi are now reportedly under the control of anti-Kadhafi demonstrators. The Paris-based group International Federation for Human Rights says that protesters also control eight other towns, some closer to the capital.

The UN Security Council will meet on Tuesday to discuss the unrest in Libya, as will the Arab League.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said he had spoken to Kadhafi by telephone for 40 minutes and that he had asked for freedom of assembly to be respected.

Earlier Ban had said he was "outraged" at reports of Libyan war planes and helicopters firing on demonstrators. He called for an immediate end to the violence.

His comments followed similar criticism from political leaders in France, Turkey, Australia, the European Union and the United States.

Meanwhile diplomatic staff around the world continue to call for Kadhafi to leave power.

After Libya's representatives to the United Nations on Monday called for him to stand down, the country's embassy in Australia reportedly cut its ties with Kadhafi on Tuesday after meeting with Australian government officials.

Libya's ambassador to India said that he had quit because of what he called "massive" and "unacceptable" violence against civilians.

And Libyan embassy staff in Malaysia condemned what they called the "massacre" of anti-government protesters. They said they were no longer loyal to Kadhafi.

A well-respected Muslim cleric, Yusuf al-Karadawi, has issued a fatwa saying that any Libyan soldier can shoot Kadhafi dead.

tags: Ban Ki-moon - Democracy - Gaddafi - Government - Libya - Moamer Kadhafi - Protests - United Nations
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FORCE GHADAFI OUT

Even now why has UN not taken decissive action against Ghadafi? Is the world not tired of leaders like this man known to have sponsored several criminal/terrorist actions against humanity around the world. How long will innocent people of libya, civilians and children go to bed with two eyes closed? After 42years of dictatorship,what is Ghadafi looking for? UN, total action now or never!

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Kadhafi should have been arrested by the UN b4 now rather than allowing him to wast the life of his people.

libya

i understand what you are trying to say on african hero, remember that the west will never tolerate anyone or anything that will attempt to develop africa, also remmber that we necessarily don't need the face change in African leadership yet but we need someone who can make us move from stage one to go forward like Kaddafi's african project. the kaddafi ideology is so sugnificant to african children that why the west are against, especially sarkozy who knows that kaddafi has a plan of getting rid of fe4nch in western africa region and instore anfrican currency, kaddafi is the one who initiated the african monetary fund with budget of more 45 billions unlikely IMF with budget of 25 billions that come with deluge control and conditions on African soil. NATO will end up fail. viva united state of Africa, viva Muammar Kaddafi

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