In a bizarre, rambling speech on state TV, Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi refused to resign despite massive anti-government demonstrations tearing across his country demanding an end to his four decades of authoritarian rule.
Gaddafi, wearing brown robes and turban, frequently shouted and pounded his fists.
I am a fighter, a revolutionary from tents ... I will die as a martyr at the end, he said. I have not yet ordered the use of force, not yet ordered one bullet to be fired ... when I do, everything will burn.
He also warned that the country could descend into civil war, or even be occupied by the U.S., should protests continue.
Gaddafi said the whole world looked up to Libya, that he had brought glory to the country and that protests were only “serving the devil.”
He also threatened to execute Libya’s “enemies” who are behind the unrest, calling them cowards and traitors who were seeking to humiliate Libyans. In addition, he claimed the protesters were drinking and doing drugs.
At least 500 people have been killed after a week of disturbances across Libya, with a heavy portion of the deaths having occurred in the eastern city of Benghazi.
The embattled Libyan leader asked those who love Moammar Gaddafi to gather in public support him, adding that they should not fear the gangs.
Come out of your homes, attack them in their dens,” he said. “Withdraw your children from the streets. They are drugging your children, they are making your children drunk and sending them to hell. If matters require, we will use force, according to international law and the Libyan constitution.