Gaddafi loyalists reported to attack Tripoli compound

Gaddafi loyalists reported to attack Tripoli compound

Libyan leader Moamer Gaddafi's compound in Tripoli, which has been overun by rebels, came under fire from his supporters on Wednesday, broadcaster Al Jazeera reported.

The fortified compound in Bab al-Aziziya, which the rebels stormed Tuesday, was shelled from the neighbouring district of Bu Salim, according to the Doha-based television station, DPA reported.

"Remnants of the Gaddafi Battalions are firing shells indiscriminately," rebel spokesman Abu Bakr al-Musrati told Al Jazeera. "They constantly change their places so that the revolutionaries will not keep track of them."

Witnesses, meanwhile, reported hearing machine gun fire near Tripoli's Rixos Hotel, where foreign reporters are staying. There were no immediate reports of casualties.

"The hotel is not a target of the shelling from the remnants of the Gaddafi Battalions," said al-Musrati.

Pro-Gaddafi fighters also attacked the town of Ajelat, west of Tripoli, with missiles and tanks, Al Arabiya reported. Forces loyal to Gaddafi were also still holed up in some areas of Tripoli.

The rebels were reportedly negotiating with tribal chiefs in Sirte, Gaddafi's hometown, to enter it without fighting, according to Al Jazeera.

Earlier Wednesday, Gaddafi claimed to have been moving around Tripoli in disguise after rebels seized the city.

"I walked a little in Tripoli without anybody seeing me. And I did not feel I was in danger," Gaddafi said in an audio message, his second on Wednesday.

"All Libyans - men and women - should be now in Tripoli to cleanse it of traitors," according to the message broadcast on the television station al-Rai.

The whereabouts of Gaddafi, who has ruled Libya since 1969, were unknown.

In an earlier message, Gaddafi pledged "martyrdom or victory" after rebels captured his compound in the capital.

A Tripoli radio station quoted Gaddafi as saying he abandoned the Bab al-Azizya compound as a "tactical move after the compound was levelled by 64 NATO airstrikes," Al Jazeera reported.

Libyan rebels captured Gaddafi's home Tuesday, after three days of fighting in Tripoli.

Footage showed the rebels standing where the leader once used to position himself while giving his speeches. They were seen destroying a statue of Gaddafi and kicking its head.

Gaddafi spokesman Moussa Ibrahim said loyalists were ready to resist for months and even years.

In a telephone interview with al-Orouba and al-Rai television stations, he said Gaddafi was ready to turn the North African country into "volcanoes, lava and fire."

A member of the rebel Transitional National Council said Gaddafi would first have to stand trial in Libya before he could be transferred to the International Criminal Court in The Hague, which indicted him for war crimes in May.

Abdel Hafiz Ghoga added in an interview with Egyptian state television that there was no chance the rebels would let Gaddafi escape.

Mahmud Shammam, a spokesman for the opposition council, said some ministers in the transitional government would move from the rebel stronghold of Benghazi to the capital on Wednesday.

He said these would include the ministers of oil, communication, interior, defence and health, CNN reported.

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