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Oct 30, 2011

Peak tides test Thai capital’s flood defenses

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Peak tides tested Bangkok’s flood defenses on Sunday as hope rose the center of the Thai capital might escape the worst floods in decades, but that was little comfort for swamped suburbs and provinces where worry about disease is growing.

The floods have killed at least 381 people since July and affected more than 2 million. Authorities have slashed growth forecasts for Southeast Asia’s second biggest economy and disruptions to auto and computer-part producers have been felt worldwide.

Sep 1, 2011

Libya NTC says extends Sirte surrender deadline

BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) – Libya’s ruling National Transitional Council has extended by one week its deadline for the surrender of Sirte, Muammar Gaddafi’s last bastion of support on the Mediterranean coast, an NTC spokesman said on Thursday.

“They have extended the deadline by a week,” spokesman Mohammad Zawawi said of the ultimatum for Gaddafi’s forces to give up, originally set for Saturday, September 3. “That means there’s progress in the negotiations.”

Sep 1, 2011

Dinars from heaven as Britain flies banknotes to Libya

BENGHAZI, Libya, Sept 1 (Reuters) – Britain’s air force has
flown 40 tonnes of freshly printed bank notes — many bearing
the image of fallen strongman Muammar Gaddafi — into Libya to
help its new rulers pay public workers and its banks to
replenish cash machines.

The 280 million Libyan dinars, officially worth about $234
million, is part of a consignment worth about $1.5 billion
ordered by Gaddafi from British printing firm De La Rue Plc but
blocked by Britain in March after he cracked down on protests.

Aug 31, 2011

Libya’s new rulers set out steps to elections

BENGHAZI, Aug 31 (Reuters) – Libya’s National Transitional
Council (NTC) has set out steps leading to democratic elections
monitored by the United Nations within 18 months.

The plan goes into effect with a “declaration of liberation”
which the NTC has not defined precisely, though NTC chairman
Abdel Mustafa Jalil told reporters the conditions for such a
declaration included the capture or death of Muammar Gaddafi.

Aug 31, 2011

Gaddafi loyalists hold out over holiday

TRIPOLI/BENGHAZI (Reuters) – Loyal followers of Muammar Gaddafi are refusing to surrender to those who have forced him into hiding, raising the prospect of new fighting in Libya when an ultimatum expires after this week’s Eid holiday.

Keen to consolidate its grip and relief hardships after six months of war, the new ruling council won a $1.55 billion cash injection when the U.N. Sanctions Committee released banknotes frozen in Britain in accounts once controlled by Gaddafi. And Libya may start pumping oil again in days, its leadership said.

Aug 29, 2011

Gaddafi forces use “scare tactics” in Sirte: rebels

BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) – Forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi in his hometown of Sirte are urging people to fight or be killed by bloodthirsty attackers, complicating efforts to arrange a peaceful surrender of the city, opponents of the Libyan leader said on Monday.

Anti-Gaddafi forces are approaching Sirte, 450 km (280 miles) east of Tripoli by road, from east and west. They say they would rather not fight for the city but talks seem stalled.

Aug 28, 2011

Sirte will fall within 10 days: Libya rebels

BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) – It will take Libyan rebels no more than 10 days to take control of Sirte, Muammar Gaddafi’s home town and last major stronghold along the Mediterranean coast, a rebel commander told Reuters on Sunday.

Rebel troops have advanced to within 100 km (60 miles) of Sirte from the east and are also approaching from Misrata in the west, and will fight for Sirte if negotiations now under way on handing them control of the town fail, he said.

Aug 28, 2011

Libya’s oil towns struggle to get back to work

RAS LANUF, Libya (Reuters) – Libya’s battered oil towns are struggling to get back to work after months of back-and-forth clashes between rebels and forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi along the Mediterranean coast.

The rebels’ ruling council faces shortages of basic supplies including fuel in many areas as its soldiers battle die-hard remnants of Gaddafi’s forces.

Aug 28, 2011

Libyan rebels: need over 10 days to take Sirte

BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) – - It will take Libyan rebels more than 10 days to take control of Sirte, Muammar Gaddafi’s home town and one of his last major bastions of support along the Mediterranean coast, a rebel commander told Reuters on Sunday.

Rebel troops have advanced to within 100 km (60 miles) of Sirte from the east and are also approaching from Misrata to the west, and will fight for Sirte if negotiations now under way on handing them control of the town fail, he said.

Aug 25, 2011

Libyan rebels won’t reveal identities of Younes’s killers

BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) – Libya’s rebel council knows who killed their top military commander but will not immediately identify them for fear the information will hurt the revolution, the council’s chairman said on Thursday.

Rebel military commander Abdel Fattah Younes, Gaddafi’s interior minister before defecting to the rebels on February 22, was killed on July 28 after he was taken into custody by his own side for questioning, sparking an investigation into his death.