February 22, 2011 / 5:11 PM / 9 years ago

Gaddafi says will cleanse Libya if protesters continue

TRIPOLI, Feb 22 (Reuters) - Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, speaking on Tuesday in a defiant but rambling speech, said he would call the people to “cleanse Libya house by house” unless protesters on the streets surrendered.

Libya’s security forces have cracked down fiercely on demonstrators across the country, with fighting seen in Tripoli after it first erupted in Libya’s oil-producing east last week, in a reaction to decades of repression and following uprisings that have toppled leaders in Tunisia and Egypt.

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