22 Feb 2011

Gaddafi clings to power and his brolly

Libyan dictator Colonel Gaddafi made a bizarre brief appearance on state television last night — cowering under an umbrella. The surreal scene followed days of violent confrontation between anti-government protesters and the country's military.

Perched in the passenger seat of a car while clutching the brolly through the open door, Gaddafi denied rumours he had fled to Venezuela, where South American tyrant chum Hugo Chavez had offered sanctuary. After 42 years of iron rule Gaddafi, 68, appeared to have vanished from his lavish palace in Tripoli yesterday as the growing uprising against him finally engulfed the capital.

But in a statement that lasted less than a minute, he said: "I was talking to the youths in Green Square, just to show them I am here, not in Venezuela." Referring to foreign media, he added: "Don't believe those dogs, those TV channels."

It has been raining in the Libyan capital for two days.

The Sun