Although there are many people on the streets of Tripoli and Benghazi protesting for the immediate removal of power from former Libyan hero Colonel Gaddafi, it seems there is a growing popular front forming from those who idolize Gaddafi.
Many people who are talking to the media are stating that these supporters of Gaddafi are paid Mercenaries from foreign countries and paid nationals released from jail. It is also now clear that there is a lot of infighting between the two sides as Libyans demanding freedom turn weapons on the people demanding Gaddafi stays in power.
There is also growing signs that there could be a power struggle within the Libyan government should Gaddafi step down, as already internal political wranglings have started to be aired by desperate government and opposition members. The internal arguments are also being echoed on the streets of Libya sparking fears that the country could descend into cilvil war.
The last few days have seen more than 500 people killed by the Libyan regime, as warplanes, the army and special secret police forces opened fire on protesters. Apparently military personnel and police have been executed by Gaddafi’s militia for refusing to fire their weapons on the Libyan protesters.
Although the protests have been intense, today has seen a much calmer day of protesting. Gaddafi did appear on State TV to state that he had indeed not fled the Country and was still in Tripoli.
Gaddafi said; “I am still in Tripoli, I was going to go down to Green Square to speak to the Youth there, but it is raining.” Green Square seemingly had controled support bases for those carrying flags and placards showing Gaddafi’s face and chanting messages of support for Gaddafi.
After stating that the rain in Tripoli seemed to be a good omen, he signed off his brief statement with the words, “I am still in Tripoli, do not believe the words of those stray dogs – goodbye!” in what looked like a dig at foreign media and protest leaders.
It does however look like Colonel Gadaffi’s days are numbered in Libya, even though in his latest statement he says he will go on State TV to announce devolution of power to local councils to enable them to control their own budgets and political systems. But protesters are saying that Gaddafi’s words do not go far enough and still want him to leave.
Hospitals in Benghazi and Tripoli have been unable to cope with the influx of injured people being sent to them from the protests after violent clashes with the Libyan army and supposed hired mercenaries.
Apparently control of Benghazi in the east of Libya has been lost to the protesters, and the airport there has been destroyed. “Regarding east of Libya, the Benghazi airport runways have been destroyed. It is not possible for Egyptair flights or any other flights to land in that airport,” Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit is quoted as saying by news wire Reuters.