Libya bombings 'meant to scare rebels'

2011-03-04 08:02

London - Bomb attacks on Brega harbour were intended to scare rebels fighting Muammar Gaddafi into leaving Libya's oil and gas hub, his son Seif Al-Islam said late on Thursday.

"The bombs were just to frighten them to go away," Gaddafi told Britain's Sky News. "There is no city there, the city of Brega is miles away. I am talking about the harbour, only oil refinery there."

Seif Al-Islam said the regime would do all it could to prevent the harbour falling into rebel hands.

"This is the oil and gas hub of Libya," he said. "All of us, we eat, we live because of Brega. Without Brega six million people have no future because we export all of our oil from there.

"There are militia and they were filming themselves, They came with three tanks and heavy machine guns. There is a red line, you cannot control the harbour. Excuse me!

"Nobody will allow the militia to control Brega, it's like you allowing somebody to control Rotterdam harbour," he added.

Rebels managed to beat off the dawn attack in the first real military battle since the Libyan uprising began on February 15.

The strongman's son warned that further protests would not be tolerated.

Peace and order

"Everything is allowed now to arrest anyone in order to have peace and order," he said.

"It is a very critical time, everybody should be very, very careful. There's no time to risk the country, to tolerate people who want to have social unrest," he added.

According to Seif Al-Islam, the regime had been flooded with phonecalls from frightened residents in rebel-held cities.

"We receive hundreds of phonecalls every day from Benghazi and people are afraid: 'We cannot go out of our houses, our boys and girls cannot go to school, we cannot get our salaries, we cannot get to banks'," he said.

"The life is dead. Why? Because they are afraid of young boys organising a militia. The militia is not talking about freedom or democracy or election."

Seif Al-Islam defended his father's assertion that the protesters were "rats" and "cockroaches".

"These people are killing Libyans," he insisted. "Have you seen the film of those people executing the police, killing them one after another? Have you seen them hanging people on the bridges?"

But he admitted that the time had come for reform.

More democracy

"The change should come," he said. "We should go towards more democracy, freedom, new constitution. We have to do it sooner or later.

"Everybody in Libya (including Muammar) believes that the one way for Libya to go forward is more democracy, freedom, local governments. But on the other hand we have the militia, so we have two different agendas."

A Venezuelan minister said earlier on Thursday that Libya and the Arab League were considering a mediation proposal by leader Hugo Chavez to find a peaceful end to the crisis.

But Seif Al-Islam dismissed the report.

"I haven't heard anything about this," he said. "It's like going to broker a deal in the Amazon.

"We respect them, they are our friends, but they are far away and they have no idea about Libya. We are able to solve our issues by ourselves."

  • IandI - 2011-03-04 08:54

    Gaddafi's sons just as crazy as their delusional dad. They better get ready to run because people will tear them to pieces as their kingdom collapses.

  • Goose - 2011-03-04 09:07

    Hahahahaha Chavez to dictator mediating for another. What a joke. The Gaddafi family better get ready to hide as the people are going to "kangaroo court" them, or failing that the international community will hang them after a trial!

  • nobodyneedstoknowme - 2011-03-04 09:11

    What an ass. The only reason he is talking about reform is because of the militia.... Sorry pal but this problem won't just "go away"

  • diranp - 2011-03-04 09:16

    Only 30% of people are unemployed in Libya Only 7.8% of people live below the poverty rate in Libya I know Gadaffi is a mad man, but honestly the people in Libya were living far more better lives than most Africans,including South Africa. Time will only tell what is the real agenda surrounding the uprising in Libya. One thing for sure Gadaffi needs to leave, but unlike most African dictators aka Uncle Bob,atleast Gaddafi didn't destroy this beautiful country

      Fred - 2011-03-04 09:45

      Isn't bombing harbours and oil refineries equivalent to destroying a country, especially, as the son says, its the hub of Libyas oil export, its only real export. I guess the death of over 250 people doesn't class as destruction to you as well.

      Wow! - 2011-03-04 10:20

      @Diranp - what you need to understand is that the people NO LONGER want Gadaffi as premier. That has been clearly demonstrated. That is what democracy is about - PEOPLE POWER. Forty years is just TOO MUCH of any one person. SO, it is time for him to go.

      diranp - 2011-03-04 12:13

      Gadaffi is a mad man, a dictator!! He is killing his people because for the first time they are saying it is time for him to stap down as Libya's leader. He should be jailed for crimes against humanity. But what puzzle's me is that life in Libya was not bad at all,good education system,lots of opportunities and lots of money.Most people in Libya live in houses not camps

  • Sharon - 2011-03-04 09:21

    Gaddafi and his son are living in a dream world. The people of Libya hate them with a passion. They have stolen millions, no billions of Libya's money for themselves. The Gaddafis live in mansions, wear only top designer clothing, eat only the best foods, indulge in shopping sprees that the ordinary Libyian could never ever afford in ten lifetimes. Gaddafi and his thugs are the ones committing genocide and they should be hauled before the ICC and made to pay for the untold suffering the people of Libya have had to endure.

  • diranp - 2011-03-04 09:26

    How much do we know about life in Libya, or do we just know the little we see on CNN and Sky

  • ruezy - 2011-03-04 09:36

    I see gaddaffi's sons have not learnt from what happened to Saddam's sons....they also thought they were untouchable, were are they now?

  • Danie - 2011-03-04 09:43

    I wonder what truth there was in my mothers statement, you will be known by who your friends are. Who is was friends with this mad man and Africa's other mad man Bob, a border away? Mandela, Mbeki, Zuma?

  • Coffeeor Me - 2011-03-04 09:50

    I have followed the Libyan story, soryy to say what I am about to say, it is my own opinion, I am becomming more convinced that the ANT-Christ is in charge of what is happening in Libya.

  • tommy 2 - 2011-03-04 10:03

    It is really amazing to watch this well orchestrated media spin that Libya & the libyan people are being killed and bombed by the gaddafi goverment.I did watch the complete interview last night on bbc or sky.Gaddafi's son took this british journalist & crew in a vehicle to all the areas that have been reported by western media that these areas have been bombed and intense fighting has been going on.The son then got out of the vehicle at these areas and asked the media crew to film and there were no signs of bombing.(the journalist would then deflect the conversation& looked very amateur like) Why are the people that are protesting armed and have taken over military bases.They are also intimidating their own libyan people in the eastern part of Libya. So if there are 200000 people marching to the white house or downing street armed and firing at the US / british soldiers and police the goverment i am sure will defend itself.The western media is always well aligned with the agenda of the US and its allies.It is really a joke watching them cover these stories from only one perspective.

  • AJ - 2011-03-04 10:46

    Well if Brega is so important, how about you stop bombing the place then? Just because you wont own it anymore does not mean its value is lost to 6 million Libyans, hell it might actually start working for 6 million Libyans for a change (as opposed to just for your warped family).

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