News / Africa

Libyan Fighters Prepare to Attack Gadhafi Stronghold

Pro-NTC fighters waiting for action near the Gadhafi-held town of Bani Walid, September 4, 2011.
Pro-NTC fighters waiting for action near the Gadhafi-held town of Bani Walid, September 4, 2011.

Libyan provisional authority fighters have massed for an attack on one of ousted leader Moammar Gadhafi's last remaining strongholds, as negotiations aimed at persuading loyalists to peacefully surrender the desert town of Bani Walid broke down.

A negotiator for the National Transitional Council, Abdullah Kanshil, said Sunday that talks failed when pro-Gadhafi tribal elders rejected an offer to have medical supplies brought into Bani Walid on the condition that authority fighters simultaneously enter the town. No comment was available from the other side.

VOA's Elizabeth Arrott is near Bani Walid and has this report

The city - about 170 kilometers southeast of the capital, Tripoli - is said to be desperately short of ambulances, doctors and supplies, including water and food.

Bani Walid is dominated by Libya's largest tribe, the Warfalla, which helped anchor Mr. Gadhafi's nearly 42-year rule. Many of the anti-Gadhafi fighters encircling the town are also Warfalla members.

The Road to Bani Walid, Libya

Meanwhile, in Tripoli, Libya's interim government announced plans to integrate 3,000 of its fighters into the national police force and find other jobs for the rest. NTC officials said the scheme also would be open to those who fought for Mr. Gadhafi.

In Italy Sunday, Foreign Minister Franco Frattini warned against a full-scale purging of Gadhafi-era military officials, urging Libya and the international community not to repeat the same "big mistake" it did in Iraq. The United States and Iraq dismantled the army there after the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003, putting many Iraqis on the streets and sending some into the insurgency.

Frattini also stressed the importance of preventing any infiltration by extremists into the new Libyan government.

NTC leader Mustafa Abdel Jalil said Saturday in Benghazi his forces are in a "position of strength" and can enter any city, but that they want to avoid bloodshed. He said now is the time for Gadhafi loyalists in Sirte, Bani Walid and several other locations to peacefully surrender, vowing that no revenge would be taken.

Provisional authorities have extended a deadline for all opponents to lay down arms until next Saturday. NTC officials hope they can avoid laying siege to civilian areas. It is not clear whether the new deadline applies to Bani Walid.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More