Ex-Libyan leader Gadhafi killed

by Greta Kaul

Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi was killed Thursday when revolutionary forces overwhelmed his hometown of Sirte, the Associated Press reports.

Gadhafi, 69, ruled Libya for 42 years. A mercurial leader, he brought isolation and international condemnation on his country. Gadhafi was the first leader to be killed in the Arab Spring wave of popular uprisings that began in December last year.

The Libyan regime fell two months ago as a result of an uprising and a bloody civil war that demanded democracy and an end to autocratic rule. Sirte, a coastal town on the Mediterranean Sea, was the last major bastion of resistance against the popular uprising.

“We have been waiting for this moment for a long time. Moammar Gadhafi has been killed,” Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril told a news conference in the capital Tripoli.

Gadhafi was barricaded in a building in Sirte with armed loyalists Thursday when revolutionary forces overtook the town.

Libyans celebrated in their capital city, Tripoli, by firing guns, honking horns, singing and hugging.

An interactive timeline of the Arab Spring can be found at the Guardian.