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August 22, 2011

Libya on the brink of change

Rebels swept into the center of Tripoli over the weekend, and the end appeared to be inevitable for the 42-year reign of Moammar Khadafy as leader of Libya, but government forces were still putting up sporadic resistance in pockets of the city. The whereabouts of Khadafy were unknown. He is wanted by the International Criminal Court in The Hague for crimes against humanity. The six-month uprising had been marked by slow progress followed by setbacks, but moved with startling speed over the weekend. Gathered here are pictures from the last few days of the fighting and celebrations. -- Lane Turner (31 photos total)

Libyan rebel fighters celebrate as they drive through Tripoli's Qarqarsh district August 22, 2011. (Bob Strong/Reuters)

A Libyan rebel fighter fires at positions held by regime forces during the battle for control of Zawiya, west of Tripoli, on August 19, 2011. (Florent Marcie/AFP) #

Libyan rebel fighters react after gaining positions against regime forces in Zawiya on August 19, 2011. (Florent Marcie/AFP) #

Pictures of Libyan leader Moammar Khadafy decorate the walls of the Zawiya hospital as rebel fighters fire at regime forces taking shelter inside on August 19, 2011. (Florent Marcie/AFP) #

Suspected members of the Libyan regime forces are rounded up in a truck by rebel fighters in Zawiya on August 19, 2011. (Florent Marcie/AFP) #

Libyan rebels celebrate after gaining positions against regime forces in Zawiya on August 19, 2011. (Florent Marcie/AFP) #

Libyan rebel fighters carry a comrade who was shot by a sniper in Zawiya as rebel forces staged an assault on regime forces in the city's main square on August 19, 2011. (Marc Hofer/AFP/Getty Images) #

A man takes pictures of the bodies of pro-Khadafy soldiers killed when rebel fighters seized control of the center of the strategic coastal city of Zawiyah on August 20, 2011. (Bob Strong/Reuters) #

Libyan rebel fighters burn a government flag in the main square after seizing control of Zawiyah on August 20, 2011. (Bob Strong/Reuters) #

A young boy who suffered a broken arm in a missile attack stands at the entrance to the main teaching hospital after Libyan rebel fighters pushed pro-Khadafy soldiers out of Zawiyah on August 20, 2011. (Bob Strong/Reuters) #

A doctor views the damage to the main teaching hospital after Libyan rebel fighters pushed pro-Khadafy soldiers out of Zawiyah on August 20, 2011. (Bob Strong/Reuters) #

Tens of thousands of Libyans celebrate what the rebels claim to be the first uprising in Tripoli against the Khadafy regime on August 21, 2011 at freedom square in Benghazi, Libya. (Gianluigi Guercia/AFP/Getty Images) #

Libyans celebrate what the rebels claim to be the first uprising in Tripoli on August 21, 2011 at freedom square in Benghazi, Libya. (Gianluigi Guercia/AFP/Getty Images) #

Libyan rebels run for cover during fighting against regime forces near the Gadayem forest, west of Tripoli, on August 21, 2011. (Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images) #

A Libyan rebel runs for cover during fighting against regime forces near the Gadayem forest, west of Tripoli, on August 21, 2011. (Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images) #

A rebel sprays graffiti depicting Moammar Khadafy on a wall in Gadayem, west of Tripoli, on August 21, 2011. Explosions and gunfire rocked Tripoli as a months-long uprising pushed through the gates of the Libyan capital. (Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images) #

Libyan rebel fighters run for cover from incoming fire as they advance through the town of Maia, 15 miles from Tripoli, on August 21, 2011. (Bob Strong/Reuters) #

A Libyan rebel tank drives over a sand barricade as rebels advance through the town of Maia on August 21, 2011. (Bob Strong/Reuters) #

Libyan rebels acquire arms form the captured military base "Kilometre 27" west of Tripoli on August 21, 2011. (Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images) #

A wounded rebel fighter flashes a victory sign in the Abu-Rafat hospital on the outskirts of Zawiya, LIbya on August 21, 2011. (Sergey Ponomarev/AP) #

A Libyan woman raises a rifle as tens of thousands of Libyans celebrate what the rebels claim to be the first uprising in Tripoli on August 21, 2011 at freedom square in Benghazi, Libya. (Gianluigi Guercia/AFP/Getty Images) #

People watch a speech by Libyan defector Abdul Salam Galod near the courthouse in Benghazi on August 21, 2011. (Esam Al-Fetori/Reuters) #

Libyans embrace each other as tens of thousands of Libyans celebrate the arrest of Moammar Khadafy's son Saif al-Islam Khadafy and the partial fall of Tripoli into the hands of the rebels on August 21, 2011 in Benghazi, Libya. (Gianluigi Guercia/AFP/Getty Images) #

Men hold a cartoon of Libyan leader Moammar Khadafy in Benghazi on August 22, 2011 as they celebrate the entry of rebel fighters into Tripoli. (Esam Al-Fetori/Reuters) #

A man lets off fireworks near the courthouse in Benghazi on August 22, 2011 to celebrate the entry of rebel fighters into Tripoli. (Esam Al-Fetori/Reuters) #

Tens of thousands of Libyans celebrate the arrest of Moammar Khadafy's son Saif al-Islam Khadafy and the partial fall of Tripoli into the hands of the Libyan rebels on August 21, 2011 in Benghazi, Libya. (Gianluigi Guercia/AFP/Getty Images) #

Rebels in Tajura, a suburb of Tripoli, celebrate taking control of the entire area in the early morning on August 22, 2011. (Str/AFP/Getty Images) #

A Kingdom of Libya flag is held aloft a building as people gather near the courthouse in Benghazi on August 22, 2011 to celebrate the entry of rebel fighters into Tripoli. (Esam Al-Fetori/Reuters) #

Libyans celebrate as rebels reach the highly symbolic Green Square in the center of Tripoli on August 22, 2011. Young men, many waving the red, black and green flag of anti-regime forces, were shouting and dancing in obvious joy. (Gianluigi Guercia/AFP/Getty Images) #

Libyan rebel fighters question a man as they search for Khadafy army soldiers in Tripoli on August 22, 2011. Libyan government tanks and snipers put up scattered, last-ditch resistance in Tripoli on Monday after rebels swept into the heart of the capital, cheered on by crowds hailing the end of Moammar Khadafy's 42 years in power. (Bob Strong/Reuters) #

Libyan rebel fighters embrace at the former female military base in Tripoli on August 22, 2011. (Sergey Ponomarev/AP) #


 
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