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Libya's interim leader promises "moderate" rule

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Libya's interim leader promises "moderate" rule


A crowd of about 10,000 people has gathered in Tripoli to hear a speech by Libya’s interim leader.

Mustafa Abdel Jalil received a hero’s welcome as he appeared at a central square in the capital.

“It’s a great honour to stand here at a time when Libya is ridding itself of tyrants,” the chairman of the National Transitional Council (NTC) said. “The Libyan people can be proud of the courage they have displayed.”

Jalil warned fighters supporting the NTC against reprisals towards pro-Gaddafi forces. He also promised the crowd Libyan authorities would adopt “moderate” Islamic rule.

Meanwhile Muammar Gaddafi still remains defiant. In a statement read out on a Syrian based TV network, the former leader who disappeared after the fall of Tripoli last month, vowed to defeat those behind the “coup” that ousted him.

On the battlefront, Gaddafi loyalists killed 15 guards at an oil refinery near the coast town of Ras Lanuf.

Southeast of Tripoli, civilians poured out of Bani Walid after intense fighting for control of the town. Those fleeing said many more are still trapped inside the city.

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