Gadhafi says his regime still alive in Libya

In new audio, deposed leader says opposition takeover is a charade

Gadhafi got the message out on a Syrian-based satellite station that has become his main mouthpiece. Al-Rai TV released written excerpts of his remarks on Tuesday. The deposed leader says what is happening is a “charade” imposed on Libyans through Nato airstrikes that will not last forever. There was no accompanying audio of his voice, but he has used the channel numerous times to put out messages urging his supporters to fight on. His whereabouts remains unknown.

Earlier, facing little resistance, revolutionary fighters captured the airport and other parts of a southern desert city that is one of the last remaining strongholds of Gadhafi’s forces Monday, even as military offensives stalled to the north.

The capture of Sabha would be a welcome victory for Libya’s new rulers, who have struggled to rout forces loyal to Gadhafi a month after sweeping into Tripoli and forcing the ousted leader into hiding. He has not been found.

Stalled

A push to capture Gadhafi’s hometown of Sirte and the mountain enclave of Bani Walid has stalled as well-armed forces loyal to the fugitive leader fight back fiercely with rockets and other heavy weaponry. Libya’s new rulers have frequently claimed gains only to find their forces beaten back.

A force of three southern brigades pushed its way into Sabha, deep in the Sahara Desert, on Monday.

“Our flags are waving there over the airport and other parts of Sabha,” Col Ahmed Bani, the military spokesman for the transitional government, told reporters in Tripoli.

The airport is about four miles from the centre of Sabha, 650 kilometres south of Tripoli.
Hassan Moussa Tabawi, a spokesman of three southern brigades that led the takeover of Sabha, told The Associated Press that revolutionary forces have control of most of the city but still face pockets of resistance in a few central neighborhoods occupied by Gadhafi loyalists and Gadhadhfa tribe.

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