Monday, January 23, 2012

Pro-Gaddafis gain control of Bani Walid

Loyalists of Muammar Gaddafi. (file photo)

Source: Press TV

Following a deadly attack against a base in Bani Walid, loyalists of slain Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi have reportedly gained control over his one-time bastion.

"The loyalists of Gaddafi took control of the entire city of Bani Walid," former National Transitional Council (NTC) member M'barek al-Fotmani said on Monday.

The latest developments follow an attack by loyalists against a base, killing at least five “thuwar” (anti-Gaddafi revolutionaries) and injuring tens more. A commander is reportedly among the dead.

According to Fotmani, the loyalists were carrying green flags and chanting pro-Gaddafi slogans.

Bani Walid, 170 kilometers (110 miles) south of Tripoli, was one of the last pro-Gaddafi bastions to fall in the deadly uprising against the former dictator's rule.

Meanwhile, the US has sent some 12,000 troops to Libya. The deployment is said to be aimed at generating stability and security in the region, the troops are expected to take control of the country's key oil fields and strategic ports.

The security situation in the country remains fragile months after the overthrow of Gaddafi. Militias have largely refused to heed calls to disarm.

In Libya, protesters have been holding regular demonstrations for weeks, demanding the ouster of Gaddafi-era officials and more transparency about how the NTC is spending Libyan assets.

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