Defiant Kadhafi orders uprising crushed

It’s quite obvious by now that this lunatic, Moamer Kadhafi, (the spelling of his name is different in each article)  isn’t going to simply relinquish his power, nor is he going to engage in dialogue with the protesters. He simply needs to be exterminated; squashed like a cockroach, which is basically what he is. TGO

Refer to story below. Source: Associated Press

TRIPOLI (AFP) – Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi ordered his forces to crush an uprising that has rocked his 41-year rule, warning armed protesters they will be executed and vowing to fight to the end.

In a defiant and rambling television speech, Kadhafi vowed to remain in Libya as leader, saying he would die as a martyr in the land of his ancestors and fight to the “last drop” of his blood.

Proclaiming the support of the people, Kadhafi ordered the army and police to crush the popular uprising against his iron-fisted rule that has already left hundreds dead in the past eight days.

He threatened to purge Libya of opponents “house by house” and “inch by inch” and warned protesters to surrender their weapons or face “slaughter.”

Hours later, his government said 300 people, including 58 soldiers, had been killed in protests, which began on February 15.

The figures released ahead of an expected press conference by Kadhafi’s son Seif al-Islam, provided the first official toll released since the unrest began.

Nearly half of the fatalities were said to have been in the city of Benghazi, the epicentre of the uprising against Kadhafi.

Army, police and militia have killed unarmed demonstrators indiscriminately, even to the point where air force planes strafed civilians, according to widespread reports.

Navi Pillay, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said the authorities should immediately stop using violence.

“Widespread and systematic attacks against the civilian population may amount to crimes against humanity,” he added.

The UN Security Council issued a statement late Tuesday voicing “grave concern” about the events in Libya and demanding “an immediate end to the violence.”

And Peru suspended diplomatic ties with the country over the bloody crackdown, becoming the first nation to take such a measure.

But the 68-year-old Kadhafi, a former army colonel, showed no signs of relenting in his nationwide address.

“Moamer Kadhafi is the leader of a revolution; Moamer Kadhafi has no official position in order for him to resign. He is the leader of the revolution forever,” he said.

“This is my country, my country,” he shouted, in a roughly 75-minute speech consisting of short, angry bursts of words, which he punctuated by shaking his fist or pointing his finger.

Kadhafi called on Libyans to demonstrate in a show of popular support on Wednesday. “Capture the rats,” he said of anti-regime protesters. “Go out of your homes and storm them” wherever they are.

The president of the country’s parliament later said calm “has been restored in most of the large cities,” adding that “security forces and the army have re-established their positions.”

Mohamed Zwei, president of the General People’s Congress, also said a commission of inquiry had been set up to investigate the eight-day revolt.

But despite his defiance, Kadhafi’s grip on Libya appeared to be slipping as his interior minister Abdel Fatah Yunes resigned and called on the armed forces to back the week-long rebellion against the veteran leader.

“I announce my resignation from all my duties in response to the revolution of February 17,” Yunes said on Al-Jazeera television.

“I call on all the armed forces to respond also to the demands of the people.”

Numerous high level Libyan officials, including ministers, diplomats and military officers, have abandoned the regime and announced their support for the rebellion.

Khadafi’s brutal crackdown on opponents in the OPEC member sent oil prices soaring to their highest level since the 2008 economic crisis amid fears for the impact on oil supplies.

New York’s WTI light sweet crude for March delivery closed at $93.57 a barrel, a gain of $7.37, or 8.5 percent, from Friday’s close.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton meanwhile condemned the regime’s “completely unacceptable” response.

“It is the responsibility of the government of Libya to respect the universal rights of their own people, including their right to free expression and assembly,” she said.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the Libyan leader had declared war on his own people.

“Kadhafi’s speech today was very scary as he has declared war on his own people,” she said, warning Berlin would consider sanctions unless he ended the crackdown.

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton urged Kadhafi to halt the bloody crackdown and launch talks.

“He (Kadhafi) cannot go on threatening his people, he absolutely has to decide that he has a dialogue with them,” Ashton told BBC’s Newsnight programme after attending talks in Cairo.

“You cannot go on acting in a violent way. It’s really, really important the people control that destiny.”

The Arab League said it has barred Tripoli from attending its meetings “until the Libyan authorities respond to demands, guaranteeing the security and stability of its people.”

UN chief Ban Ki-moon announced he was cutting short a trip to Los Angeles to deal with the Libyan crisis, warning the situation was unpredictable and potentially dangerous.

Calling for “a prompt and peaceful transition,” he reiterated that he had told Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi to halt violence against civilians in a telephone call on Monday which was “not an easy conversation.”

“Yesterday, I spent 40 minutes on the phone with the Libyan leader… It was not an easy conversation. I told him, bluntly, that the violence must stop — immediately,” Ban told a UN event in LA.

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