Gadhafi must go,rebels say

Medical workers and fellow rebels carry a wounded fighter to the hospital in the recaptured town of Ajdabiya yesterday.
Medical workers and fellow rebels carry a wounded fighter to the hospital in the recaptured town of Ajdabiya yesterday.

He ignores truce

Posted: April 12, 2011

BENGHAZI, Libya - Libyan rebels, backed by European leaders, rejected a cease-fire proposal by African mediators yesterday because it did not insist that Moammar Gadhafi relinquish power.

"Colonel Gadhafi and his sons must leave immediately if he wants to save himself. If not, the people are coming for him," said Mustafa Abdul-Jalil, a former justice minister who split with Gadhafi and heads the Benghazi-based Transitional National Council.

Abdul-Jalil said the African Union proposal "did not respond to the aspirations of the Libyan people" and involved only political reforms.

"The initiative that was presented today, its time has passed," he said. "We will not negotiate on the blood of our martyrs. We will die with them or be victorious."

Gadhafi's forces, meanwhile, shelled rebel-held Misrata despite the African Union delegation's assurance that Gadhafi had accepted their cease-fire plan at a meeting late Sunday in Tripoli. A doctor who lives in the western Mediterranean city said the shelling began overnight and continued intermittently throughout the day yesterday.

He said six people, one of them a 3-year-old girl, were killed by missiles that slammed into residential areas. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he feared retaliation if he was discovered by Gadhafi's forces.

Weeks of fierce government bombardment of Misrata, the only major city in the western half of Libya that remains under partial rebel control, have terrorized its residents. Dozens have been killed and food and medical supplies are scarce, according to residents, doctors and rights groups.

Protesters in Benghazi said they had little faith in the visiting African Union mediators, most of them allies of Gadhafi. Three of the five African leaders who came preaching democracy for Libya seized power in coups.

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