Gaddafi escapes as airstrike kills son

A NATO bomb has struck a house in Tripoli where Muammar Gaddafi and his wife were staying, missing the Libyan leader but killing his youngest son and three grandchildren, a government spokesman said.

Sayf al-Arab Gaddafi was the sixth son of Gaddafi and brother of the better known Sayf al-Islam Gaddafi. The younger Gaddafi had spent much of his time in Germany in recent years.

Colonel Gaddafi and his wife were in the Tripoli house of his 29-year-old son, Sayf al-Arab Gaddafi, when it was hit by at least one bomb dropped from a NATO warplane, according to Libyan spokesman Moussa Ibrahim.

“The leader himself is in good health,” Mr Ibrahim said. “He was not harmed. The wife is also in good health.”

NATO later confirmed it had staged air strikes in Tripoli but did not confirm Libya’s claims that Gaddafi’s son or grandchildren had died.

“NATO continued its precision strikes against Gaddafi regime military installations in Tripoli overnight, including striking a known command and control building in the Bab al-Azizya neighbourhood shortly after 1800 GMT Saturday evening,” a statement said.