Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Three Blasts Heard in Libyan Capital

Three blasts heard in Tripoli

Wed May 4, 2011 1:39AM

People inspected damage at Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's house in the Gargur area of Tripoli after an air raid late on April 30, 2011.

Three loud explosions have been heard in the Libyan capital Tripoli as NATO warplanes flew over the city.

Witnesses said the incidents occurred in the early hours of Wednesday morning and smoke could be seen rising from a site in eastern Tripoli, AFP reported.

The blasts came three days after the youngest son of Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi and three of his grandchildren were killed in an airstrike on Gaddafi's Bab al-Aziziya compound in eastern Tripoli.

Gaddafi forces and outraged crowds attacked the British and Italian embassies on Sunday in retaliation for the killing of Gaddafi's family members, destroying the British Embassy completely, reports said.

The Libyan government has said NATO's attack was “a direct operation to assassinate the leader of the country,” but the military alliance says they targeted a command and control building and their target was “military in nature.”

US Senator John McCain, the top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, has said Gaddafi's command and control should be destroyed and “if he (Gaddafi) is killed or injured because of that, that's fine.”

Russia has criticized the deadly attack on Gaddafi's compound, saying NATO operations are exceeding the UN resolution which mandated a no-fly zone over Libya with the goal of protecting civilians.

On Saturday, Gaddafi said he was ready to talk with NATO member states operating in Libya to stop the fighting, but his offer of a ceasefire was rejected by NATO.

In addition, the Gaddafi regime says it will grant amnesty to rebel forces fighting in the western town of Misratah if they lay down their arms.

But opposition forces said they would not surrender.

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