In Libya: Last Battle Of 'Bitter, Brutal Civil War'

Aug 24, 2011
Originally published on August 24, 2011 11:27 am

The dramatic scenes Tuesday of joy and looting at what was Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi's main compound in Tripoli have again raised the prospect that "the war is almost over," NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro reported on Morning Edition earlier today.

Now, it's important to remember that, as we've seen this week, nothing about what appears to be the final battle between Gadhafi's loyalists and opposition forces should be taken for granted. Early Monday it looked as if the opposition would easily take the city. Then Gadhafi's forces struck back. Now, Gadhafi is in hiding and though he has called on his followers to resist the opposition, he appears to have lost control of much, if not all, the capital.

But Lourdes says that it looks like the opposition's victory at Gadhafi's compound could be "the culminating battle of this bitter, brutal civil war."

And, as the BBC writes, the opposition fighters are "pushing to secure Tripoli." There's "a new front line to the east of the international airport."

Meanwhile, more than 30 foreign journalists remain trapped in Tripoli's Rixos hotel. According to The Guardian, they are "mainly British and American journalists from the BBC, Sky, CNN, Fox, Reuters, Associated Press and Chinese television."

The BBC's Matthew Price told his network's Today program that it's a "desperate situation" for the journalists. They're being prevented from leaving by guards who remain loyal to Gadhafi. Food and water are running out.

Lourdes is not among the journalists at the Rixos.

Update at 10:50 a.m. ET: CNN is now reporting that the journalists have been able to leave the Rixos and are safe.

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