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Revolutionaries reject talks with Gaddafi

The Libyan opposition, the Transitional National Council, has strongly rejected a recent call for talks by embattled Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi.

A senior opposition official with the council said on Saturday that Gaddafi had no role to play in the North African nation’s future.

“The people of Libya cannot possibly envisage or accept a future Libya in which Gaddafi’s regime plays any role,” Abdul Hafiz Ghoga, vice-chairman of the transitional council said.

Ghoga told a press conference in Benghazi, an opposition stronghold, that the embattled leader has lost credibility and “the time for compromise has passed.”

Headed by former justice minister Mustafa Abdel Jalil, who was among the first high-profile Libyan figures to join protesters following the Gaddafi regime’s brutal crackdown on the opposition, the council plans to lead the country to elections.

The council is made up of defected members from the Gaddafi regime, judges, diplomats, intellectuals, dissidents and several political activists.

Gaddafi has said he is ready for a ceasefire and negotiations with the West provided that NATO brings an end to its airstrikes against Libya.

Speaking on national television, Gaddafi said he did not intend to step down or leave the country.

Meanwhile, NATO has reacted by saying it wants Gaddafi forces to end their attacks on civilians before it considers the Libyan ruler’s cease-fire offer.

Earlier in the day, NATO bombs struck a Libyan government complex in the capital, Tripoli, damaging two buildings.

Elsewhere in Libya, regime forces have fired shells, mortars and rockets into the besieged city of Misratah, killing at least 15 people, including a 9-year-old boy.

The regime is trying to block access to Misratah by sea. It has threatened to target any ship that enters the port of Misratah.

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