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Colonel Moammar Qaddafi has drawn up a “suicide plan” to blow up Tripoli should rebels capture Libya’s capital city, according to Russia’s envoy to Africa, who heard of the plan directly from Libyan Prime Minister Baghdadi al-Mahmudi last month.Mikhail Margelov, the Russian diplomat, said he believed the prime minister’s claim to be true, the Telegraph reports.
While Qaddafi is rumoured to be running low on money and ammunition, Margelov said the government would have plenty left over for such a “suicide plan.”
“Tripoli theoretically could lack ammunition for tanks, cartridges for rifles. But the colonel has got plenty of missiles and explosives,” he told the Russian newspaper, Izvestia.
The Canadian general leading NATO’s operations in the country, Charles Bouchard, questioned the veracity of the Libyan prime minister’s claims in a conference call from his Italian headquarters.
While acknowledging that Qaddafi has given orders to blow up fuel refineries and other facilities should the rebels advance into Tripoli, Bouchard said he knew nothing of a plan to destroy the entire city.
Moreover, he said, just because an order is given does not mean it will be executed by soldiers with family members that would probably be killed in such an attack.
“We are seeing a fair bit of his troops, of his generals surrendering, of his troops abandoning their posts,” Bouchard said, according to the Globe and Mail. “And therefore one has to put all of these aspects into consideration when looking at the situation on the ground.”
The rebels are advancing toward Tripoli on two fronts. South of the capital city, rebels are just a few miles from a town that would give them access to a highway leading directly into Tripoli.
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