Purported Gadhafi message urges Libyans to resist new leaders
updated 1:15 PM EDT, Thu October 6, 2011
A National Transitional Council fighter walks past a plume of black smoke at the frontline in Bani Walid on October 4.
- NEW: The speaker alleged to be Gadhafi tells Libyans to be brave and protest
- Gadhafi loyalists were driven from the hills in Bani Walid
- Fighting has raged for weeks for control of Bani Walid and Sirte
(CNN) -- A message purportedly from deposed leader Moammar Gadhafi on Thursday slammed the legitimacy of Libya's ruling National Transitional Council and urged Libyans to take to the streets to protest.
"I tell them not to be scared from anyone," said the audio message, aired on Syrian-based Al-Rai television. "You are protesting peacefully in front of the world. Be brave and go out in the streets.
Of the transitional council, the speaker said, "Where did it get this official representation from? Did the Libyans elect it?"
Gadhafi has not been seen in public in months and his whereabouts remain unknown.
Meanwhile, revolutionary fighters still battling to remove the last bastions of Gadhafi's forces were able to wrest control of strategic posts in the hills of Bani Walid.
The hills lie on the northern front of the fighting in Bani Walid and were infested with snipers, said Abdulla Kenshill, a National Transitional Council spokesman in the city.
The council's fighters were also able to confiscate much of the heavy weaponry used by the Gadhafi loyalists.
Kenshill said two of the council's fighters were killed in a rocket attack Wednesday night.
Bani Walid radio was still broadcasting pro-Gadhafi messages from homes inside the city, Kenshill said. However, Libya Al Hurra radio, which supports the revolutionaries, was also on the air from Bani Walid, which is about 170 kilometers (105 miles) southeast of Tripoli.
Gadhafi's son Saif al-Islam Gadhafi is believed to be hiding out in Bani Walid. That city and Sirte, the coastal birthplace of Gadhafi, remain contested even as the National Transitional Council moves forward to form new governance in Libya.
Libya's new leadership plans to declare "liberation" if and when Sirte falls. But Gadhafi's men have put up stiff resistance and the fighting has gone on there, as well as in Bani Walid, for weeks. The transitional council's leader and the interim prime minister have promised to step down once Sirte is taken to clear the way for a new government.
Moammar Gadhafi and Saif al-Islam Gadhafi, are wanted for alleged crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands.
Journalist Mohamed Fadel Fahmy contributed to this report.
Part of complete coverage on
updated 7:36 PM EST, Tue March 5, 2013
Shortly after the attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi last September, a phone call was placed from the area.
updated 9:07 PM EST, Thu February 7, 2013
A testy exchange erupted between Sen. John McCain and Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey during the latter's testimony about September's deadly attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya.
updated 9:16 AM EST, Thu January 24, 2013
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton took on Republican congressional critics of her department's handling of the deadly September terrorist attack in Libya.
updated 8:22 PM EST, Wed January 23, 2013
The Pentagon released an hour-by-hour timeline of the September 11 assault on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
updated 11:13 AM EST, Tue January 29, 2013
Bilal Bettamer wants to save Benghazi from those he calls "extremely dangerous people." But his campaign against the criminal and extremist groups that plague the city has put his life at risk.
updated 8:16 AM EDT, Sun September 23, 2012
Two former Navy SEALs who died last week in an attack on a U.S. consulate in Libya died after rushing to help their colleagues.
updated 10:24 PM EDT, Tue September 18, 2012
The former Pakistani Ambassador to the UK, Akbar Ahmed, explains why an anti-Islam film has triggered massive protests.
updated 11:01 AM EDT, Fri September 14, 2012
The fall of dictatorships does not guarantee the creation of free societies, says Ed Husain, author of "The Islamist."
updated 11:32 AM EDT, Tue September 25, 2012
Protests have swept the world following the online release of a film that depicts the Prophet Mohammed as a womanizer, child molester and killer.
updated 6:56 PM EDT, Wed September 19, 2012
A satirical magazine pours further oil on the fiery debate between freedom of expression and offensive provocation.
Was the attack on the Libyan U.S. Consulate the result of a mob gone awry, a planned terror attack or a combination of the two?
The images of the American embassy burning in Benghazi might have conjured up memories of Tehran in 1979 but the analogy is false.
updated 10:57 AM EDT, Mon September 17, 2012
Libyan authorities have made more arrests in connection with the attack on the U.S. consulate that left four Americans dead.
updated 7:59 PM EDT, Mon September 17, 2012
Three days before the deadly attack in Benghazi, a local security official says he warned U.S. diplomats about deteriorating security.
For the latest news on developments in the Middle East and North Africa in Arabic.