News / Africa

NTC Forces Hammer at Gadhafi Stronghold of Bani Walid

Fighters from around the region to joined the NTC push into Bani Walid, September, 10 2011
Fighters from around the region to joined the NTC push into Bani Walid, September, 10 2011

Multimedia

Audio
Elizabeth Arrott

Forces loyal to Libya's National Transitional Council are making what they hope is the final push for Bani Walid, one of ousted leader Moammar Gadhafi's last strongholds. NATO is providing the NTC with air support.

Anti-Gadhafi forces have converged on Bani Walid in what appears to be the most serious attempt yet to take the town. An NTC commander said forces have "brought the revolution" to the Gadhafi stronghold, and at mid-afternoon they were going house to house to root out snipers fighting for Gadhafi.  

But as NATO planes circled overhead, the sound of explosions and heavy fighting could be heard at a checkpoint 3 kilometers north of the town, indicating a situation more serious than a simple mopping-up operation.  Pro-Gadhafi snipers also still held the high ground, at least briefly, at the northern checkpoint.

Despite the continued fighting, NTC forces said they were confident they were close to victory.

One fighter returning from the battle said, God willing, things were going well.

Other fighters, some of them appearing to be weekend volunteers, piled into pickup trucks and headed toward the front, chanting "God is great" while their comrades fired off celebratory rounds.

Provisional authorities had given three main Gadhafi-held towns until Saturday to surrender.  After a weeklong pause during which the sides held on-and-off negotiations, the deadline came early in Bani Walid. NTC fighters began to move in late Friday after their positions came under attack by Grad rockets.

A provisional authority spokesman said Saturday it was still not too late for Gadhafi supporters to give up.

"Anyone, who lays his weapon down and doesn't fight the revolutionary [forces] and doesn't harm the civilians, will be safe in our hands and we will protect him," and NTC commander said.

It was not clear if any high-ranking ex-officials, including Gadhafi himself or his relatives, are in Bani Walid or the other remaining strongholds, Sirte and Sabha.  Gadhafi this week released an audio message saying he remains in Libya, and called on his followers to rise up against their opponents.

You May Like

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Christmas Gains Popularity in Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal 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.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid