Gadhafi's Still Standing...
Fighting Flares in Tense Tripoli..Gadhafi Loyalists Stiffen Resistance as Strongman Remains at Large
TRIPOLI, Libya—A nervous limbo, punctuated by gunfire, took hold of Libya's capital Monday, one day after opponents of Col. Moammar Gadhafi rolled triumphantly into the central square here—damping hopes by rebels and their international allies that the strongman's supporters would melt away.
Machine-gun and antiaircraft rounds could be heard throughout the day in Tripoli, as residents said loyalist gunmen had taken up positions in several neighborhoods. Rebels who attempted to turn an old police academy into their military headquarters quickly came under heavy fire, sending a stream of casualties to a makeshift clinic.
Green Square, where rebel troops had celebrated Sunday after marching largely unopposed into Col. Gadhafi's stronghold capital, appeared to be a no man's land. Roads leading to the square were made impassable by what locals said were loyalist snipers.
Amid the uncertainty, one of Col. Gadhafi's sons, thought to have been captured by the rebels a day earlier, showed up at a Tripoli hotel and invited foreign journalists on a tour of the city, according to news reports
CONFUSION IN LIBYA...Qaddafi’s Son Taunts Rebels in Tripoli
TRIPOLI, Libya — The euphoria that followed the rebels’ triumphant march in Tripoli gave way to confusion and wariness on Monday, as Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi remained at large, his son Seif al-Islam made a surprise appearance at a hotel with foreign journalists, and pockets of loyalist forces stubbornly resisted
While rebel leaders professed to be making progress in securing Tripoli and planning for a post-Qaddafi government, and international leaders hailed the beginnings of a new era in Libya, the immediate aftermath of the lightning invasion was a vacuum of power, with no cohesive rebel government in place and remnants of the Qaddafi government still in evidence.
Seif al-Islam el-Qaddafi, whose capture the rebels had trumpeted since Sunday, walked as a free man to the Qaddafi-controlled luxury Rixos Hotel in the center of Tripoli early Tuesday, boasting to foreign journalists there that his father’s government was still “in control” and had lured the rebels into a trap, the BBC and news services reported.
His appearance raised significant questions about the credibility of rebel leaders.
Loyalists strike back...Battle for Tripoli not yet over as Gaddafi loyalists strike back
TRIPOLI, Libya — Forces loyal to the fugitive Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi struck back Monday against the rebel fighters who had swept euphorically into the capital the night before, forcing them to retreat from several strategic locations and tempering hopes that the battle for Tripoli was all but over.
The dramatic appearance Monday night of Gaddafi’s son Saif al-Islam at the Rixos hotel, where the Tripoli-based press corps remains trapped, contradicted the rebels’ assertion the day before that they had captured him and cast into doubt their claim of controlling 80 percent of the capital.
Video footage recorded by the Reuters news agency showed Saif al-Islam being greeted by supporters. “To hell with the ICC,” he said, in reference to the International Criminal Court, which has issued a warrant for his arrest. “We assure the people that things are fine in Libya.”
The BBC and CNN quoted him as telling reporters that government forces had lured the rebels into a trap and “broken the back” of the opposition army and that pro-Gaddafi forces are back in control of the city.
The confusion made the assertion impossible to confirm, but with gunfire and explosions echoing ominously through the streets and Gaddafi’s whereabouts still unknown, it was clear that the capital was far from secure.
President Obama and other world leaders declared an end to Gaddafi’s nearly 42-year-long rule and hailed the courage of the Libyan people. The leaders said they were looking forward to cooperating with a new Libyan government, which presumably would be led by the opposition’s Transitional National Council, based in the eastern city of Benghazi.
Obama cautioned that “the situation is still very fluid.”
SHOCK: Gadhafi's 'detained' son makes defiant appearance....Live blog: Gadhafi son reappears in Tripoli
As Libyan rebels fought to consolidate their hold on Tripoli on Monday and early Tuesday, reports emerged that two sons of Libya's longtime leader were free despite earlier reports that rebels had captured them.
Saif al-Islam Gadhafi, son of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi, appeared to reporters in a convoy of armored Land Cruisers in Tripoli on Tuesday morning, more than a day after rebels claimed they had captured him. Hours earlier, Libya's ambassador to the United States said that one of Moammar Gadhafi's other sons, Mohammed Gadhafi, had escaped.
Fighting continued Monday between rebels and forces loyal to Moammar Gadhafi in Tripoli, the latest installment of battles in a months-long uprising in Libya. Here are the latest developments:
[Updated at 11:39 p.m. ET, 5:39 a.m. Tuesday in Libya] Three surface-to-surface missiles were fired within Libya on Monday evening, NATO said in a statement. The alliance said it was not aware of damages or casualties.
The missiles were fired from the area of Sirte, the hometown of Libyan ruler Moammar Gadhafi. Initial reports indicate they landed in the coastal area of Misrata, "most likely at sea or on the shore," NATO said.
"The use of such missiles presents a direct threat to innocent people. Although the surface-to-surface missiles in (Gadhafi's) arsenal are highly inaccurate, and are not designed to hit a specific target, they are a weapon of terror. Their use against an urban or industrial area is utterly irresponsible," NATO said.