Gaddafi last sighting reported amidst gunfire in Tripoli

Gaddafi last sighting reported amidst gunfire in Tripoli

Gaddafi last sighting reported amidst gunfire in Tripoli

The meeting in a complex on Friday with his son Khamis and daughter Aisha was the last confirmed sighting of Gaddafi before he made a dash across the desert to hole up in his home region of Sabha, on the edge of the Sahara, the Telegraph reported.

The extraordinary details of the flight of Gaddafi - considered now to be the most wanted man on earth - was recounted by a soldier of the ultra-loyalists Khamis brigade escorting the fleeing cavalcade, who was captured by the rebels, the paper said.

17-year-old Abdulsalam Taher Ali said that he had heard talk in the convoy that they were headed towards the city of Sabha, a place in the middle of Sahara, long mooted as the dictator's final redoubt.

The soldier said that Gaddafi, his son and daughter held the clan summit for 10-15 minutes before converging into two heavily armed convoys of Land Cruisers to dash across the desert.

While Gaddafi and his son's 25 car convoy took the direct route to Sabha, 85 kilometres away escorted by a Posse of 90 guards. Aisha and other members of the family took the circuitous route to head for Sabha and then on to the Algerian border.

Recounting what was to prove Khamis's final journey, Taher Ali said that Gaddafi's son decided at first to ride in a Mercedes but changed his mind to ride an armoured Toyota Land Cruiser. The convoy was ambushed by rebels outside the town of Tarhouna, about 80 miles south-east of Tripoli in which Khamis was killed.

The paper said that Aisha, her mother Safiya and Gaddafi's two sons Hannibal and Mohammad eluded the rebels to flee in a convoy of armoured limousines to take refuge in neighbouring Algeria.

Such was the chaotic nature of their flight, at one point they blundered across the wrong border - entering into Tunisia before reaching Algeria - thanks only to the intervention of local tribesmen.

Telegraph said that their arrival in Tunisia could have resulted in their arrest rather than sanctuary.

"People from the Touareg tribe helped them find their way into Algeria," Shamsiddin Ben-Ali, a spokesman for the transitional council, said.

Algerian newspaper Ennahar reported that Aisha gave birth to baby girl and named her Safiya after her grandmother. The daily also reported that Gaddafi family was under house arrest in Algeria.

Ennahar said that the birth of the child could create a stumbling block to expedite the Gaddafis because she was born on the Algerian soil.