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Libyan rebels catch Gadhafi foreign minister

TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) — Rebels hunting the top officials in Moammar’s Gadhafi’s ousted regime have captured his foreign minister and are closing in on Gadhafi himself, rebel officials said Thursday.

The announcement, made on the 42nd anniversary of the coup that brought Gadhafi to power, also came as rebels forces pressed toward three major bastions of the crumbling regime, including Gadhafi’s hometown.

“The regime is dying,” rebel council spokesman Abdel-Hafiz Ghoga said late Wednesday, after two of Gadhafi’s sons made conflicting statements on Arab television stations — with one vowing to fight until death and the other offering to negotiate a truce. “Gadhafi’s family is trying to find an exit,” Ghoga said. “They only have to surrender completely to the rebels and we will offer them a fair trial. We won’t hold negotiations with them over anything.”

Ghoga said Thursday that the rebels had extended the deadline for the surrender of Gadhafi’s hometown of Sirte — originally set for Saturday — giving the loyalist forces there one more week. “There are good indications that things are moving in the right direction,” he said, including that the rebels have captured a city near Sirte.

Algeria offered safe haven to Gadhafi’s wife and three of his children Monday, angering the Libyan rebels.



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