- (Photo: Reuters/Courtesy Al Jazeera TV)
Revolutionaries have killed Moammar Gaddafi in Sirte Thursday. The details surrounding his death are still unclear, but the moments leading up to his death have been chronicled here.
• Early Thursday, the former Libyan leader and key Gaddafi loyalists tried to escape Sirte in a truck convoy.
• A U.S. drone as well as French fighter jets opened fire on the convoy.
• Gaddafi and a few accomplices escaped and hid in drainage pipes nearby.
• Prime Minister of Libya, Mahmoud Jibril, said that Gaddafi was discovered hiding in “a big bag pipe of the sewage system.”
• Wearing pants and a long-underwear shirt, Gaddafi was armed, but showed to resistance.
• Gaddafi was escorted out of the drainage pipe when fighting broke out between revolutionaries and Gaddafi’s accomplices.
• Gaddafi was shot in his right arm.
• Jibril said, “They came under intense crossfire,” when Gaddafi was shot in the head.
“I cannot confirm whether he was shot by our people or his security brigade. It was crossfire,” said the prime minister, confirming the death. Gaddafi died within minutes.
Gaddafi was indicted for crimes against humanity by The Hague in June 2011, and was on his way to an appointment about upcoming elections in Libya when he met his demise.
Following Gaddafi’s death, Libyans took to the streets in exuberant celebration. The beginnings of a new government are underway, and the Transitional National Council formed shortly after the Libyan revolt. Fault lines in the country between secular and Islamist factions have become more apparent in recent weeks.
U.S. President Barack Obama addressed the world Thursday afternoon to discuss the events in Libya.
"Today, the government of Libya announced the death of Muammar Gaddafi," he said. “This marks the end of a long and painful chapter for the people of Libya who now have the opportunity to determine their own destiny in a new and democratic Libya.”
“Today we can definitively say that the Gaddafi regime has come to an end,” Obama added. “One of the world’s longest serving dictators is no more.
“The dark shadow of tyranny has been lifted,” he stated.
The U.S. president used his address to call upon the Libyan government to respect the human rights of all Libyans. He said that the U.S. understands that Libya will travel “a long and winding road to full democracy” but that ultimately the future of the country is finally in the hands of the people of Libya.
“You have won the revolution,” Obama said. “Today belongs to the people of Libya.”
The president concluded his statement, saying, “The American people wish the Libyan people the very best in what will be challenging but hopeful days, weeks, months and years ahead.”