Gathafi to rebels: masses will walk over you, crush you
TRIPOLI - Libyan leader Moamer Gathafi Thursday ruled out talks with his foes to end a five-month rebellion against his rule and said the battle had already been decided in his favour.
"The battle has been decided. It has been decided in favour of the masses and the people," he said in a speech broadcast to thousands of supporters in his home town of Sirte, 450 kilometres (280 miles) east of Tripoli.
"They cannot defeat us. They will be defeated and they will go home empty-handed," he added.
Gathafi said that no one "can face an army of millions. For the first time you are facing a people in arms," he said, referring to NATO's military campaign under a UN mandate that effectively backs the rebels.
Gathafi insisted he would not start negotiations with the rebels.
"I will not talk to them. There will be no negotiations between me and them...," adding: they "must understand that their desperate fight is a lost cause. They must return to their bases".
"The masses will walk over you and crush you," he warned the rebels who are in control of several regions in the east and west of the vast north African country.
In another speech broadcast by Libyan television Gathafi addressed "a meeting of Misrata tribes", calling for "a march on the city (east of Tripoli) to liberate it" from rebels.
The meeting was attended by several dozen people, according to television footage.
As Libya's rebels seek to consolidate their progress in the east and ramped up for a pre-Ramadan offensive in the west, Gathafi has made several speeches to supporters in cities still under his control over the past weeks.