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Gaddafi son tours capital in convoy

Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's son, who was reported arrested by rebels, is free.

Saif al-Islam, Gaddafi's one-time heir apparent, turned up at the hotel where foreign journalists stay in Tripoli.

He then took reporters in his convoy on a drive through the city, telling them: "We are going to hit the hottest spots in Tripoli."

They then drove around streets full of armed Gaddafi backers, controlled by roadblocks. They visited several sites where Gaddafi supporters were gathered.

The convoy ended up outside his father's Bab al-Aziziya compound and military barracks, where at least a hundred men were waiting in queues for guns being distributed to volunteers to defend the regime.

They also toured the Gaddafi stronghold neighbourhood Bu Slim.

Rebels appear to have taken control of large parts of the capital since they entered on Sunday night and Gaddafi's grip on power seemed to be slipping fast. But it was known that the area around the Rixos hotel and nearby Bab al-Aziziya were still under the regime's control.

In addition to Saif, the rebels have claimed they also captured two other sons of Gaddafi, but that has not been independently verified.

There was no explanation from either Saif or the rebel leadership council in the city of Benghazi as to why Saif had been reported arrested, something that was confirmed by the International Criminal Court in the Netherlands.

Saif and his father are both wanted by the ICC for crimes against humanity. Given that the ICC had confirmed the arrest, his bizarre appearance raised the possibility that he had escaped rebel custody. When asked about the ICC's claim that he was arrested by rebels, he said: "The ICC can go to hell," and added: "We are going to break the backbone of the rebels."


From Belfast Telegraph