Tripoli under our control, Gaddafi son says

2011-08-23 07:28

Tripoli - Tripoli is "under control" of the regime, a son of Libyan strongman Muammar Gaddafi claimed early Tuesday, after rebels said they had taken most of the capital and gunfire rattled the port city.

Saif al-Islam, wanted by the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity, met with an AFP correspondent and two other journalists, after ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo said rebel forces had arrested him.

"Tripoli is under our control. Everyone should rest assured. All is well in Tripoli," the defiant son of the Libyan strongman told the three journalists at a vacant lot outside his father's Bab al-Azizya compound in Tripoli in the very early hours of Tuesday.

"You have seen how the Libyan people rose up" to fight the rebels who arrived in Tripoli, he said, referring to battles in the capital between Gaddafi loyalists and rebel forces.

"The West has high-tech technology which disrupted telecommunications systems and sent messages to the people," declaring the fall of the regime, he said about text phone messages sent Sunday to the residents of Tripoli.

"This is a technological and media war to cause chaos and terror in Libya," he added, dressed in a Khaki shirt.

Seif al-Islam, who arrived for the meeting in an armoured 4x4, claimed the rebels had suffered "heavy casualties" Monday when they stormed Gaddafi’s compound.

"I am here to refute the lies," he said about reports of his arrest.

Meanwhile, Mohammed Gaddafi, the strongman's eldest son who also had been reported arrested, had escaped, the Libyan ambassador to Washington told CNN.

Fair trial

Ali Suleiman Aujali with the Libyan rebel National Transitional Council (NTC) told CNN that Mohammed was apparently taken by "maybe Gaddafi’s forces." A senior rebel source confirmed the escape to AFP, saying "Yes, it's true, he has escaped." The source in the rebel capital of Benghazi, eastern Libya, spoke on condition of anonymity.

But the Libyan leader's whereabouts remained unknown, as the capital plunged into darkness after electricity supplies were turned off everywhere but his compound, and gunfire crackled around the Mediterranean port city.

He broadcast three defiant audio messages on Sunday, vowing he would not surrender and urging the people of Tripoli to "purge the capital," even as rebel forces swept through the capital and took over waterfront Green Square.

"The Gaddafi era is over," rebel chief Mustafa Abdel Jalil told a news conference in the eastern rebel capital of Benghazi after his forces stormed the capital, more than six months after the fighting began.

He said he hoped the dictator would be "captured alive so that he will be given a fair trial."

He had also declared that Saif al-Islam had been arrested.

Despite those reports, Saif al-Islam arrived for the meeting with journalists in a vehicle in front of his father's building complex, which was bombed by the Americans in 1986.

As the journalists arrived for the meeting several dozen regime supporters, thinking Gaddafi’s son had come, began chanting slogans and waving the Libyan flag.

transitional government

"Allah, Moamer, Libya and that's it," they chanted, brandishing pictures of the Saif al-Islam and his father, before peering into the vehicle and finding journalists, but still not moving away from the car.

Some loyalists attached a green Libyan flag behind the chair where Saif al-Islam was to sit. On a coffee table, they placed a small Libyan flag, a Koran and a copy of Gaddafi’s Green Book, the 1975 text in which he laid out his philosophy.

Moreno-Ocampo had said Saif al-Islam was arrested and in detention, calling for his swift transfer.

"We hope he can soon be in The Hague" to face judgement, Moreno-Ocampo said as he indicated he was planning to contact the "Libyan transitional government" later in the day.

An ICC spokesperson said on Monday that the court is seeking Saif al-Islam's transfer to The Hague to face charges of crimes against humanity.

Saif al-Islam is accused together with his father with orchestrating a plan to put down the Libyan revolt by "any means necessary" since it was sparked in mid-February.

This included the murder of hundreds of pro-freedom Libyan protestors and injuring hundreds of others when security forces shot a crowds using live ammunition, as well as the arrest and torture of numerous others.

Before the revolt erupted, Saif al-Islam was increasingly seen as a successor to his father, despite publicly ruling out any dynastic ambitions in the North African country.

Described as the Libyan strongman's de facto prime minister and most influential person within his inner circle, Saif al-Islam is wanted because he "espoused and executed Muammar Gaddafi’s plan which led to the commission of the crimes", a court document stated.

  • slg - 2011-08-23 07:33

    This is not unusual in a war of this nature.

  • kolobe - 2011-08-23 07:40

    sounds like local white media

      Stuart - 2011-08-23 08:06

      another stupid racist comment. grow up.

      Gary - 2011-08-23 08:10

      have to say something racist don't you, even when the topic have very little to do with "white" South Africans

      Ryan Tunney - 2011-08-23 08:13

      so it sounds like the truth then....

      Boxxer - 2011-08-23 08:38

      Go play in traffic.

      Netherlands - 2011-08-23 08:45


  • Jacques Jones - 2011-08-23 07:44

    it was not so long ago the regime said that there is nothing wrong in libya.......

  • Boxxer - 2011-08-23 07:44

    I miss slating MALema.

      DEVILS SON - 2011-08-23 09:31

      if and when malema goes i will actually miss him haha, he makes me laugh. perhaps we can display malema in the apartheid museum, like a freak show, so people can take their kids, just dont feed the malema, he's obese enough as it it

  • McDaNife - 2011-08-23 07:53

    Wtf is going in Libya, first its the rebels who got hold of Tripoli and now one of the son claims Tripoli is under control of the regime.

  • Anton - 2011-08-23 07:54

    It is hugely embarrassing for the NTC ,the ICC, and the world media !! But it takes nothing away from the incredible advancements the oppostion (aka Rebels) has made in the last 48 hours. 80 percent of Tripoli under the opposition control, is totally amazing. And most resistance the rebels are having, is from these gadaffi COWARDS, hiding on roof tops and other safe places. This story about this thug Saif, is not a set back , but a hick up, in liberating Libya !!!

      feppie - 2011-08-23 09:26

      Don’t be shy Anton - Why give all your praises to the Rebels who are mere SUPPORT ACTORS. “Praises” should go to the nightly ILLEGAL NATO/US bombing for most of the past 6 months. And yes you are right referring to "liberating Libya". Libya's OIL ARE BEING LIBERATED BY BP AS WE SPEAK!

      Anton - 2011-08-23 12:53

      feppy, No, BP is there, while we speak, and has been there all along, because they have the expertise to get the oil out of the ground . They, and all major oil companies, are in EVERY country in the world that has oil. But, I will try not to be shy next time !!!

  • Ryan Tunney - 2011-08-23 08:11

    Does this idiot not realise that his little compund is not Tripoli..

  • BOFFINBOB - 2011-08-23 08:13

    Lets train our Zimbabwe refugees, arm them & pack them off to bring down the Mugabe regime. Oh ja, sorry, keep forgetting, we dont have an Army anymore.

      nn.prv - 2011-08-23 08:43

      These refugees probably have a better brain than yours !

  • Biko Lives - 2011-08-23 08:19

    "Screw the ICC" I couldn't have said it myself Saif al-Islam! Africa must pull out of this sham that is only meant to undermine the leadership of our continent and is used by those with narrow political interests!!

      nosiphom - 2011-08-23 08:24

      Because your so called leaders are greedy dictators and murderers. Yes the US and Nato may also be murderers, but at least they bulldoze a mandate to do so in bodies like the UN. So when they murder, at least they got approval. YOu dictator leaders who rig elections, change constitutions to be in power for ever, sned rapists, etc, etc. Talk too much and do little, deserve to be prosecuted.

      slg - 2011-08-23 08:25

      Biko is turning in his grave at your naiveté. You're supporting a tyrant worse than the Apartheid regime.

      slg - 2011-08-23 08:27

      The US and Nato are not murderers. look it up in the dictionary.

      JustinD - 2011-08-23 08:41

      You are just another dummy.......

      Anton - 2011-08-23 08:41

      Biko Lives, Most of us would love, African leadership on our continent. BUT WHERE IS IT ???

      Netherlands - 2011-08-23 08:46

      If there is ONE THING AFRICA LACKS.... and that is LEADERSHIP!!!!

      Netherlands - 2011-08-23 08:47

      If there is ONE THING AFRICA has plenty of... Ar5eholes like Biko Lives

      open-minded - 2011-08-23 09:06

      @Netherlands, AFRICA lacks financial freedom...Africa is still raped by foreign counties for its resources...this morning on BBC NEWS they report that the OIL Industries might be open soon in Libya and most of the companies who will be contending for running of the field are based in EU and US...WOW!

      Aijaman - 2011-08-23 09:49

      Spot on madala!!!

      slg - 2011-08-24 01:02

      Openminded, I don't know what you mean by the oil industries. Oil companies have been extracting Libya's oil for decades, even with Gadhafi there. The difference now will be that he doesn't pocket billions for himself a d limit production. This is not an exaggeration.

  • slg - 2011-08-23 08:37

    This will be his 15 minutes of fame from under his Daddy's (very dark) shadow. In a way it's sad.

  • JustinD - 2011-08-23 08:40

    I wonder if he will still have that stupid smug look on his face while hanging from a tree.....

      feppie - 2011-08-23 11:08

      There you are = callous, murderous, bloodthirsty like NATO/US bombers attacking at night for the last 6 months. I bet you attend church each week praying for ... ?

  • GSXA - 2011-08-23 08:42

    This battle is far from over. The Gadaffi clan is far to cunning and heartless. Until such time as they have been arrested and paraded in front of the world media at the world court, the fight will continue. Gadaffi and his clan have to be taken alive come hell or high water as otherwise they will just become martyrs and this will drag on forever.

  • chirpee24 - 2011-08-23 08:46

    V = Verloorder!!

  • spacecowboy - 2011-08-23 09:42


  • Martin du Plessis - 2011-08-23 09:42

    ""Tripoli is under our control. Everyone should rest assured. All is well in Tripoli," the defiant son of the Libyan strongman told the three journalists at a vacant lot outside his father's Bab al-Azizya compound in Tripoli in the very early hours of Tuesday." LOL, and people actually take this desperate man seriously? This sounds a lot like the Iraqi information minister in the 2nd Gulf War, when he said they were counter-attacking the americans and driving them into the sea. LOL

      2WhiteStars - 2011-08-23 12:18

      I am also reminded of that Iragi "information minister". He had such a way with words even George W Bush considered himself a fan of his! These liars in Tripoli - don't believe a word. I cannot wait to see all of the Gadaffis led away in chains - or in a black plastic bag. Long live the West.

  • ElKapino - 2011-08-23 09:50

    Allah, Moamer, Libya and that's it

      2WhiteStars - 2011-08-23 12:19

      All three are a fiction I reckon.

  • Frank - 2011-08-23 10:25

    @open-minded True, but ask yourself who's allowing all these foreign countries a piece of the pie. Foreign countries can't just come and "rape" the continent like in the past. The leaders are allowing the "rape". Don't know about you but that sounds more consensual rather than rape. Anyway, I'm not saying it's right, I'm just blaming the greedy and corrupt African leaders for allowing it. Yeah, I've done some research on this whole civil war and it seems like the rebels are defeating the Gaddafi government. I'm speculating that this is just an attempt to put doubt in the minds of the people. Classic propaganda!! Anyway, I hope this war ends soon and in favor of the rebellion, although I have a feeling that it might still continue for a while further.

      slg - 2011-08-24 01:10

      Africa is hardly on the radar for meaningful direct foreign investment because of the corruption. The only rape going on is by corrupt leaders. Overseas investment is pretty much limited to minerals, out of necessity. It would be altogether different if we could get our act together a clear out the corrupt leaders

  • zibha - 2011-08-23 10:55

    Africa is at war all you guys care about is South African pity politics , the western imperialist are hungry as ever , ready to Colonize Africa again , we should all unite at this point in time and support the interest of Africa over those of the western.

      2WhiteStars - 2011-08-23 12:20

      Your way of thinking is exactly why Blacks are as stuffed as they are. Sorry. Imperialist? Colonists? Wake up dude.

      slg - 2011-08-23 23:20

      Colonialism ended sixty years ago

  • zibha - 2011-08-23 12:46

    They may overthrow Gaddafi but Africa wont forget , yes we wont .. we will tell his historic story over the hills and valleys of this great Land , yes Africa shall raise ,her enemies will perish like dust in the wind.... lets all support the honorable Colonel Gaddafi... long Live Libya , Long Live Africa

      juliusedwa - 2011-08-23 13:25

      He may be gone but his lagacy will always remains in Lybians, and in Africa at large! I swear Lybians one day will regret!~

      zibha - 2011-08-23 13:35

      They regret , they will surely do !!

      slg - 2011-08-23 23:20

      Virtually the whole of Libya is celebrating. There's no doubt about this. And Libyans know best what has been happening under Gadhafi.

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