Libya's National Transition Council (NTC) said they are ready to declare victory after eight months of revolution, once they have captured the city of Sirte.
Sirte, Gadhafi's hometown, is the one the last strongholds for troops loyal to the old regime, and it has proved to be the biggest challenge of the war for the rebels. On Tuesday, the NTC begins its final assault on the city, Voice of America reported, and the revolutionaries have already captured the southern district of Bouhadi.
We are surrounding them from all sides. We have orders to call in from all fronts and use all kinds of weapons, NTC fighter Saeed Hammad told Reuters.
The interim government said it will step down after Sirte is captured and that fighting will continue in small pockets in the south of Libya, including in Bani Walid.
Meanwhile, Gadhafi's sons are still more visible than the ousted leader himself, albeit only slightly. A video of Saif al-Islam Gadhafi rallying loyalist troops surfaced online, but it cannot be verified. Saif al-Islam was once considered to be the Western educated, progressive heir to his father's throne, but throughout the unrest he has proven to be a vicious and loyal second-in-command for Gadhafi.
Mutassim Gadhafi, once the National Security Adviser of Libya, is thought to be hiding inside a hospital in Sirte, Reuters reported Monday.
Our revolutionaries [in Sirte] are fighting those who are accomplices of the tyrant in crimes against the Libyan people, Ahmed Bani told Doha-based Libya TV.
They are a group of killers and mercenaries led by Mutassim Gaddafi who is now in the Ibn Sina hospital in Sirte to avoid being hit, according to newly received information.
Former professional soccer player and Hollywood producer Saadi Gaddafi is in Niger, where he is under virtual house arrest in a lush villa next to the presidential palace. Saadi went to Niger as part of a large convoy in August, along with a number of high-ranking Libyan generals. Despite an arrest warrant, an NTC request and an Interpol Red Notice, Niger will not extradite Saadi, according to AllAfrica.
If it is to question Saadi, the NTC, which we have recognized, can freely come to Niger. However, I reaffirm that at this stage there is no possibility of extraditing Saadi, because ultimately what needs to be applied is international conventions.
Meanwhile, the revolution gained one new fighter, U.S. national Matthew VanDyke. VanDyke is a journalist who was arrested and imprisoned by the Gadhafi regime in March. He was freed by the rebels only after the fall of Tripoli, and he has fought along side them since. Currently, he is with his brothers outside of Sirte.
Sirte will take a couple of weeks. Snipers are too much of a problem, he told AFP.
My family has raised me to keep my commitments. They know I will return after the war is over, he said.