M A I N   N E W S

Gaddafi’s reign ran deep down under Tripoli

London, August 26
Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi had virtually built an underground city under capital Tripoli, with a vast maze of well-hidden reinforced tunnels fanning out for miles in different directions.
“There is a Tripoli above ground and a Tripoli underground,” a rebel commander exclaimed as his men stumbled upon what had long been rumoured: An elaborate secret underground network.

Outsiders who had never seen the tunnels were shocked at the sight of these long tubes running in all directions beneath the Bab al-Aziziya command centre of Gaddafi, assuming that these virtually connected all of Tripoli underground.

The rebel commanders said that the maze of tunnels probably explained Gaddafi’s ability to appear anywhere in the city without being seen. The commanders guess that Gaddafi fled the city through these, The Telegraph reported.

The tunnels have outlets to two houses in Abu Salim district of Tripoli where rebels laid a siege last night after intelligence reports that Gaddafi was hiding there. But the hunt proved fruitless.

The tunnels are wide enough to accommodate small vehicles and rebel troops found abandoned golf buggies, which appeared to have been used by Gaddafi, his family and aides to move around quickly and comfortably under the city.

The tunnels which have become an attraction for curious rebels are high enough for two people to walk comfortably abreast, their walls are of thick concrete and doors are of heavy metal. Most of the entrances to the tunnels lead from Gaddafi's sprawling house, but some of the entry points are from places like next to the famous statue of a bronze fist crushing an American fighter outside the so-called "House of Resistance".

Some of the corridors led to well-equipped bomb-proof bunkers, crammed with communication equipment, including hundreds of phones, probably used as command and control centres.

The tunnels may have served the purpose of their builder Muammar Gaddafi. But in times to come, they have the potential to become tourist attractions like Vietnam's Cu Chi tunnels near Ho Chi Minh city. — PTI






HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |