Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi
Source: Press TV
Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi has said air strikes carried out on his compound in the capital Tripoli by NATO warplanes can not kill him.
"I tell the cowardly crusader [NATO] that I live in a place they cannot reach and where you cannot kill me," Reuters quoted Gaddafi as saying in brief audio tape remarks on Friday.
"Even if you kill the body you will not be able to kill the soul that lives in the hearts of millions," he added.
Gaddafi's remarks come after Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini said the Libyan ruler had most probably been injured in a NATO air attack on his Bab al-Aziziya compound in Tripoli on Thursday.
The Catholic bishop in Tripoli, Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, who had allegedly revealed the news of Gaddafi's injury to Frattini, dismissed the report on Friday, saying he had only remarked that Gaddafi was “under psychological shock from the death of his son.”
Gaddafi's youngest son, Saif al-Arab, and three of the leader's grandchildren were killed in a NATO air strike on April 30.
Libyan government spokesman Mussa Ibrahim told journalists on Friday that Gaddafi "is in very good health, high morale, high spirits," and "he is in Tripoli," denying earlier reports that Gaddafi might have left the capital.
Several explosions were heard in Tripoli on Friday night and Saturday morning as NATO warplanes overflew the city. Smoke could be seen rising in the eastern areas, witnesses said.
White House says the US and NATO will continue the attacks against the Libyan regime until Gaddafi stops killing people.
Washington has stopped short of recognizing the National Transitional Council (NTC), which has been formed by Libya's revolutionary forces.