“Crowds of people are on the streets. Some are incredulous, others are crying from joy and all bars with BBBC and al Jazeera on are overcrowded with people”, said to MISNA Father Allan Archebuche, head of Caritas in Tripoli, describing the first moments after the confirmation of the death of the former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, killed – based on first reports released by the NTC (National Transitional Council) – in an exchange of fire in his birth city Sirte.
“The TV is now airing the first photos of the Colonel’s body. The crowds are now headed toward the Martyrs Square, the one that in the ‘Jamahirriya’ was called ’Green Square’, in the centre of the capital, which has become the symbol of the rebellion”, added Fr. Allan, whose voice was hard to hear because of the sound of car horns celebrating the end of the regime.
“Nobody expected his capture or death. In forty years, the young people of this nation have only seen one leader. Today is an unforgettable day for the Libyan people and marks the end of an era”, Fr. Allan explained.
According to Abdel Majid of the TNC, Gaddafi’s convoy was hit in a NATO air strike while attempting to flee from Sirte. Four vehicles that were headed west were hit, including that carrying the regimes armed forces chief Abu Bakr Yunus Jaber, who was also killed in the strike, while Gaddafi’s cousin and adviser Ahmed Ibrahim was captured.