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Libyan TV shows footage of the body of Gaddafi's son allegedly killed in a NATO airstrike

posted 1 May 2011, 08:46 by Mpelembe   [ updated 1 May 2011, 08:49 ]

Libyan TV broadcasts footage purportedly showing the bodies of Muammar Gaddafi's youngest son Saif al-Arab, a family friend and one of the children allegedly killed in a NATO air strike on a Tripoli house.

TRIPOLI, LIBYA (MAY 1, 2011) LIBYAN TV - 
ootage broadcast on Libyan TV on Sunday (May 1) showed what the commentary described as the bodies of Muammar Gaddafi's youngest son Saif al-Arab, a family friend and one of the children allegedly killed in a NATO air strike on a Tripoli house.



Libyan government spokesman on Sunday said Muammar Gaddafi himself survived the air strike that killed his son Saif al-Arab and three young grandchildren.

Libyan TV showed pictures of a group of clergymen and representatives of the Church Council of Libya in a room where three shrouded bodies were on display.

"These are innocent people. This is the leader's son, Saif Al-Arab," an unnamed Muslim cleric present in the room said pointing to one of the bodies. "He was a civilian, a student of economics," the cleric said.

Members of the Church Council of Libya joined the Muslim cleric in prayers standing next to the shrouded bodies.

Libyan officials took journalists to the house, which had been hit by at least three missiles. The roof had completely caved in at places, leaving mangled rods of steel hanging down among splintered chunks of concrete.

The deaths have not been independently confirmed. But they would be sure to heap pressure on NATO -- which denies targeting the Gaddafi family -- from opponents of the mission who say it goes beyond its U.N. mandate to protect civilians.

It would also show the vulnerability of Gaddafi himself.

Fighting in Libya's civil war, which grew from protests for greater political freedom that have spread across the Arab world, has reached stalemate in recent weeks with neither side capable of achieving a decisive blow.

Saif al-Arab, 29, is one of Gaddafi's less prominent sons, with a limited role in the power structure.

Libyan government spokesman described him as a student who had studied in Germany. He said the grandchildren killed were pre-teens. He said Muammar Gaddafi and his wife were unharmed and in good health.

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