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Gadhafi Needs To Give Up Power, Obama Says

 A top State Department diplomat says “it’s only a matter of time now” before besieged Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi has to step down.

Assistant Secretary of State Jeffrey Feltman says “I think what’s clear is that the rebels are winning.” He says U.S. officials don’t know Gadhafi’s whereabouts.

Interviewed on ABC’s “Good Morning America” Monday from Cairo, Feltman says “the rebels are clearly taking over the city. They are clearly taking over the institutions.” He says American officials have been told the rebels have seized control of Libya’s state television.

Asked whether he believes the al Qaida terrorist network will gain new footing in Libya, Feltman says the first step in a post-Gadhafi setting is “trying to prevent some kind of cycle where people act out their own retributions,” as happened when Saddam Hussein fell in Iraq.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.

President Barack Obama says it’s time for Moammar Gadhafi to recognize that his rule over Libya has come to an end and he should relinquish power to stop the violence and bloodshed of six months of civil war aimed at toppling his autocratic regime.

“The future of Libya is now in the hands of the Libyan people,” Obama said Sunday in a statement from Martha’s Vineyard, where he’s vacationing with his family. The U.S. says it will work closely with the rebels.

After a day of dramatic developments, Obama said the situation in Libya had reached a “tipping point” and control of the capital was “slipping from the grasp of a tyrant.”

“The surest way for the bloodshed to end is simple: Moammar Gadhafi and his regime need to recognize that their rule has come to an end,” Obama said. “Gadhafi needs to acknowledge the reality that he no longer controls Libya. He needs to relinquish power once and for all.” Obama issued the statement after conducting a conference call with members of his national security team, who had provided him with updates throughout the day.

Read more at NewsOne.

[Source: Associated Press]

 

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