Gaddafi Resurfaces After Fall of Tripoli

Days after Tripoli fell into the hands of rebels, Muammar Gaddafi has released an audio message where the beleaguered Libyan leader claimed that his retreat from Bab al-Aziziya compound was merely a “tactical move.”

In the audio message released Tuesday by Al Orouba TV, Gaddafi said he left his last known bastion after rebels successfully entered it. The 69-year-old longtime despot said he will not surrender, saying it was either martyrdom or victory in his fight against rebels. Gaddafi also reportedly said that his compound was completely destroyed by 64 NATO airstrikes. Reuters also quoted a spokesman for the Gaddafi government that forces loyal to the longtime ruler have captured four high-ranking Qataris and an Emirati.

Meanwhile, rebels continued to celebrate their victory in Tripoli, although some Gaddafi forces continue to resist in some areas of the capital. “We have won the battle,” Abdul Hakim Belhaj, the top rebel commander in Tripoli, told al-Jazeera, according to BBC. “They fled like rats.”