For the past three weeks, the world had been witnessing the Libyan revolution against its tyrant dictator. Inspite loosing holds across the country and almost becoming a fugitive in his own land Col Gaddafi's whereabouts were still unknown. Infact the government fighters had been puzzled by the bitter and determined resistance from loyalist fighters. Trapped in a tiny coastal strip just a few hundred metres wide, they had refused to give up, even when a victory by the forces of Libya's National Transitional Council (NTC) seemed inevitable. On Thursday, after a brutal – and ultimately hopeless – last stand, he died.
The former leader killed by the rebels in Sirte in wake of French air strike, although precise details of his death remain unclear. But the death was miserable end to the king of kings. Gaddafi was born in Sirte and his affinity was so much for this place that his end also came up exactly here.
While details of the precise circumstances of Gaddafi's death remained confused and contradictory last night, it appears he was trying to flee the city in a convoy of cars when they came under attack from NATO jets. Last night the French claimed responsibility for the airstrike.
The convoy was then apparently caught in a gun battle with fighters loyal to the NTC. Possibly wounded in the shootout, Libya's former ruler crawled into a drain; later he was set upon by revolutionary fighters, one of whom beat him with a shoe. Witnesses said he perished pleading for mercy after being dragged out of a hiding place inside a concrete drain. According to one fighter, the dying Gaddafi demanded: "What have I done to you?"
In post mortem stills, taken in an ambulance after his death, several wounds are visible including a large round wound close to his left temple, a wound in the centre of his forehead and an elongated wound close to his throat. Doctors and a reporter who saw the body also describe seeing a gunshot wound to the chest although this may have been the wound close to his throat.