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Gadhafi Vows to Not Surrender as World Leaders Plan Transition

September 1, 2011 at 12:00 AM EDT
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JEFFREY BROWN: On a day in part devoted to planning for a post-Gadhafi Libya, the story took another turn with the apparent reappearance of the longtime leader.

Lindsey Hilsum of Independent Television News begins our coverage.

LINDSEY HILSUM: Cockpit video from an RAF strike on a barracks at Bani Walid. That’s where Gadhafi’s closest associates, and maybe the man himself, are thought to be.

He popped up in message form on Syrian television.

MOAMMAR GADHAFI, Libyan leader (through translator): Everything you here is lies. Don’t believe it. Fight it with guns. Fight it with bullets. Let bullets speak on behalf of the Libyan people. If they want to enter into a long war with us, let it be so.

ABDEL HAKIM BELHADJ, military council (through translator): We are listening to these nonsensical comments which we consider to be those of a dead man dancing. The collapsing former regime has neither power nor any forces anymore.

LINDSEY HILSUM: At the beach house of his son Saadi, we found fighters enjoying the facilities. Last night, Saadi said he had been authorized by his father to negotiate with the new National Transitional Council. But another son, Saif al-Islam, said to Arabic television that they would take Tripoli back, a sign of confusion and disunity in the family.

Saadi doesn’t seem to have been as hated and feared as some other members of the Gadhafi family. But one man has just said to me, “As long as any of the Gadhafis are alive and in Libya, we will be looking over our shoulders.”

The fighters who took Tripoli 10 days ago are now nearing Colonel Gadhafi’s hometown of Sirte. A spokesman for new authorities said Saturday’s deadline for surrender would be extended by a week, in the hope that whatever the Gadhafis say, his supporters will now crumble.

MARGARET WARNER: Meantime, in Paris, top officials from 60 countries gathered to discuss a post-war Libya, including releasing Libyan money now frozen in Western banks. But they acknowledged that the victory of the anti-Gadhafi rebels is not yet complete.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and other leaders said the NATO military campaign would continue.

SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON: What happens in the coming days will be critical, and the international community has to help the Libyan people get it right.

First, as I told my counterparts earlier today, we need to continue NATO’s military mission as long as civilians remain under threat of attack. For the sake of the Libyan people, we have called on Gadhafi and those around him to recognize that their time is over and lay down their arms.