The Libyan Government started to distribute weapons among the population in anticipation of a NATO land invasion, according to a spokesman who denied reports on the capture of a western city by rebels.
According to government spokesman Moussa Ibrahim, “many cities are organizing squadrons to repeal any possible land attack” by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) after limited progress with air bombings.
“If NATO comes to Misratah or any other Libyan city, we will unleash hell over their men. We will be like a fireball, ten times worse than Iraq,” warned Ibrahim, as he told journalists that the idea is to destroy the foreign invading forces.
He said that “we are arming the population with rifles and light weapons, but not to fight the rebels,” but NATO militaries.
After Britain confirmed that it was sending 10 military trainers to Benghazi, the main insurgence bastion in eastern Libya, France and Italy followed suit and announced that they would help rebels to organize and use communication equipment.
After weeks of impasse in the war conflict, centered in Ajdabiya and Brega, in the country eastern areas, and in Mosratah, in the west, the Government of Muammar Gaddafi declared itself today in favor of a political solution and the end of NATO bombings.
Libyan Foreign Minister Abdelati Al-Obeidi said that if aggressions end, elections might be held in six months and even Gaddafi fate could be discussed, as the president son said a new Constitution is ready for a post-war Libya.
However, Ibrahim said government forces control 80 percent of Misratah, the scene of the fiercest clashes of the last few days, and said there is no “power balance” problem there because all tribes are on Gaddafi side.
Armed opponents control the port and a nearby area, according to Obrahim, while other sources reported that Misratah, the third largest in Libya, continues under heavy fire, with 50-60 people wounded daily, mostly civilians.
Regarding those figures, Tripoli authorities lamented the death of two foreign journalists and vowed to investigate what happened, though they made clear that “this is war and people on both sides are killed.”
Forces loyal to Gaddafi accused NATO of bombing civil and military areas in Tripoli, and state-run JANA news agency reported 11 people killed and another 18 wounded by air attacks against two cities south of Tripoli.
The Atlantic alliance denied having caused civil casualties and admitted incursions against a bunker in Jelat Al Ferjan region.
Ibrahim also denied that a dozen Libyan officers and soldiers, including one general, deserted the Army in the wake of the alleged taking of a city by rebels in the border with Tunisia.