Military denies capture of Kadhafi's son, Mutassim

Mutassim, the son of former Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi, is on the run and has not been taken into custody says a senior military commander inside Kadhafi’s hometown of Sirte. 

Reuters/Saad Shalash

A top adviser to the new Libyan leadership, Abdelkarim Bizama, had said in the capital, Tripoli late on Wednesday that the feared Mutassim, who served as Kadhafi's national security chief, was in custody.

"It is not true that Mutassim was captured," said Wesam Bin Hamid, brigade commander of the Martyrs of Free Libya Brigade, one of the new regime's main units inside the town.

"But some prisoners we have captured are saying that Kadhafi (himself) is in Sirte," he added.

New regime fighters said they had also captured the Kadhafi regime's top cleric on Wednesday as he attempted to flee Sirte with his beard shaven off to disguise his appearance.

Khaled Tantoosh, who served as the mufti of Libya under Kadhafi, made broadcasts in support of the fugitive strongman through the long uprising that ended his 42-year rule.

Meanwhile, loyalists of Moamer Kadhafi were keeping up their dogged resistance in two parts of Sirte on Thursday.

There were reports of rocket fire, and machinegun and small arms exchanges were heard from the Dollar neighbourhood, facing the Mediterranean in the northwest of the coastal city, and in the Number Two residential neighbourhood.

"The fighting has narrowed down to these two neighbourhoods," Free Libya Brigade field commander Yahya al-Moghasabi told the French news agency.

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