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

Video Obama Announces Plan to Send 3,000 Troops to Liberia in Ebola Fight

At US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Obama details troop deployment and other pieces of US plan More

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

Muslims in Kunming say that they condemn the violence, it is not a reflection of the true beliefs of their faith More

Humanitarian Aid, Equipment Blocked in Cameroon

Move is seen as a developing supply crisis in West Africa 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.
Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Communityi
X
September 16, 2014 2:06 PM
Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Community

Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video West Trades Accusations Over Ransoms

As world leaders try to forge a common response to the threat posed by Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, there is simmering tension over differing policies on paying ransoms. In the past month, the jihadist group has beheaded two Americans and one Briton. Both countries refuse to pay ransom money. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London, there is uncertainty in the approach of some other European nations.
Video

Video Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interest

The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.
Video

Video Washington DC Mural Artists Help Beautify City

Like many cities, Washington has a graffiti problem. Buildings and homes, especially in low-income neighborhoods, are often targets of illegal artwork. But as we hear from VOA’s Julie Taboh, officials in the nation's capital have come up with an innovative program that uses the talents of local artists to beautify the city.
Video

Video US Muslim Leaders Condemn Islamic State

Leaders of America's Muslim community are condemning the violent extremism of the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. Muslim leaders say militants are exploiting their faith in a failed effort to justify violent extremism. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Americans' Reaction Mixed on Obama Strategy for Islamic State Militants

President Barack Obama’s televised speech on how the United States plans to “degrade and destroy” the group known as the Islamic State reached a prime-time audience of millions. And it came as Americans appear more willing to embrace a bolder, tougher approach to foreign policy. VOA producer Katherine Gypson and reporter Jeff Seldin have this report from Washington.
Video

Video Authorities Allege LA Fashion Industry-Cartel Ties

U.S. officials say they have broken up crime rings that funneled tens of millions of dollars from Mexican drug cartels through fashion businesses in Los Angeles. Mike O'Sullivan reports that authorities announced nine arrests, as 1,000 law enforcement agents fanned out through the city on Wednesday.
Video

Video Bedouin Woman Runs Successful Business in Palestinian City

A Bedouin woman is breaking social taboos by running a successful vacation resort in the Palestinian town of Jericho. Bedouins are a sub-group of Arabs known for their semi-nomadic lifestyle. Zlatica Hoke says the resort in the West Bank's Jordan Valley is a model of success for women in the region.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid