Official sources report that Muammar Gaddafi died of his wounds after being captured today as he was fleeing his home town of Sirte in a convoy that was struck by NATO forces.
NTC officials say the 69-year old deposed Libyan leader was killed by rebel forces while he was in custody.
Gaddafi’s death marks a historic end to 42 years of tyrannical rule on the oil-producing North African state. Gaddafi went into hiding after rebel forces began to fight loyalists who had toppled the leader from power on August 23.
.Now the new interim government will declare formal “liberation” with a timetable for elections.
“We confirm that all the evils, plus Gaddafi, have vanished from this beloved country,” interim Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril said in Tripoli as the body was delivered, a prize of war, to Misrata.
“It’s time to start a new Libya, a united Libya,” Jibril added. “One people, one future.”
Nuri Berruien, the chairman of Libya’s state-run National Oil Corp., said Gaddafi’s death will expedite the nation’s efforts to return to normal crude-output levels.
Anti-Gaddafi fighters immediately took to the streets to celebrate after hearing the news.
Government fighters hoisted the red, black and green national flag above a large utilities building in the center of a newly-captured Sirte neighbourhood and celebratory gunfire broke out among their ecstatic and relieved comrades.
US President Barak Obama said the death of Gaddafi marks the end of a “long and painful chapter” for the people of Libya and gives them the opportunity to determine their own destiny.
“You have won your revolution,” he said referring to the Libyan people.