Kadhafi's fate should be decided by Libyans: Medvedev

20th October 2011, Comments 0 comments

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said Thursday in response to reports of Moamer Kadhafi's capture that only the Libyan people could decide the deposed strongman's fate.

"The fate of Kadhafi should be decided by the Libyan people," Medvedev was quoted as saying by Russian news agencies following reports of Kadhafi's capture in his native city of Sirte.

Reports of the former dictator's capture emerged just as Medvedev and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte emerged for a press appearance that followed a scheduled meeting otherwise devoted to trade.

Libyan National Transitional Council commander Mohamed Leith had moments earlier told AFP that Kadhafi was "badly wounded" while the Libya lil Ahrar television channel had said he was in custody.

The Dutch prime minister appeared prepared to address the media.

"My assistant has just told me that Kadhafi really has been captured. This happened during our negotiations" with Medvedev, Russian news agencies quoted Rutte as saying through a translator.

"If it's true, it's great," Rutte added according to the Dutch news agency ANP.

"But we had nothing to do with it," Medvedev joked in response.

His comments alluded to Russia's strong resistance to the foreign campaign that helped the former rebel forces oust Kadhafi's armies from Tripoli and the other major cities of the oil-rich country.

Kadhafi was a strong ally of Russia who was allowed to pitch his tent on the Kremlin grounds during a visit to Russia in 2008 and purchased weapons from Moscow.

But Russia's refusal to veto a UN Security Council resolution in March allowed for the NATO-led campaign to proceed.

© 2011 AFP

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