France says unable to confirm Kadhafi son's death

5th August 2011, Comments 0 comments

France, a driving force in the NATO operation in Libya, on Friday said it could not confirm reports that Moamer Kadhafi's youngest son and feared commander Khamis had been killed in an air strike.

"We don't have information to corroborate this report," foreign ministry spokeswoman Christine Fages said after a Libyan rebel spokesman said NATO had hit an operations centre in the town of Zliten killing 32, including Khamis.

Rebel military spokesman Mohammed Zawawi cited spies operating among Kadhafi's ranks and intercepted radio chatter as sources.

But there was no independent verification of Khamis's death, which has been rumoured a number of times during Libya's five month-long civil war.

If confirmed Khamis's death would be a huge blow to both the regime's military and the morale of Kadhafi's inner circle.

The 28-year-old Khamis trained at a Russian military academy and commands the eponymous and much-feared Khamis Brigade -- one of the Libyan regime's toughest fighting units.

Fages said that "what NATO is doing is applying a Security Council resolution."

"NATO is protecting civilians from attacks by the Kadhafi regime. The air strikes, which are only targeting objectives of military interest, are being carried out within this framework," she said.

© 2011 AFP

0 Comments To This Article