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Bani Walid defies NTC forces

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Bani Walid defies NTC forces

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Forces continue to amass around Bani Walid, one of the few towns in Libya still loyal to Muammar Gaddafi.

The National Transitional Council (NTC) is trying to negotiate a peaceful handover with the powerful Warfalla tribe that controls the town. But despite calling on anti-Gaddafi Warfalla from Tripoli to lead the talks, they are at a standstill.

The Warfalla make up a sixth of the Libyan population and are often described as “kingmakers”, so – not surprisingly – the NTC is keen to win their support.

Along with Sirte, Bani Walid is one of the last remaining pockets holding out against the uprising.

But Gaddafi’s whereabouts are still a mystery and it is feared he may have many supporters lying low but ready to rise again – all of which means it is too early for the rebel fighters and the NTC to claim victory.