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Gaddafi clan split as rebels zero in on Sirte

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Gaddafi clan split as rebels zero in on Sirte


A division appears to have developed within the Gaddafi family with one son, Saif-Al Islam, vowing continued resistance while his brother is trying to negotiate a surrender.

Saif told a Syrian Satellite TV channel that his father was alive and urged a war of attrition against the rebels. He said Green Square would be “liberated” and that 20,000 youths were ready to defend Sirte.

But the head of Tripoli’s Rebel Brigade, Al Mahdi Abdel Hameed, has dismissed the comments. “We also will continue our fighting until the last blood. His comments were nonsense. Where will he fight? We are almost completely in control of Tripoli.”

By contrast, Saadi Gaddafi has declared he has his father’s authorisation to negotiate a way to end the bloodshed and has contacted the NTC.

The head of the military council in Tripoli, Abdel Hakim Belhadj, had his own version of those talks. “Saadi contacted us and expressed the intention to join the rebels,” he said. “But we in our turn said the surrender of all the figures of the regime is inevitable.”

Despite the differing messages the rebels stand by their ultimatum for Gaddafi loyalists in Sirte to surrender by Saturday.

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