SIRTE, Libya - (AP) - Moammar Gadhafi, Libya's dictator for 42years until he was ousted in an uprising-turned-civil war, waskilled Thursday as revolutionary fighters overwhelmed his hometownof Sirte and captured the last major bastion of resistance twomonths after his regime fell.
Interim government officials said one of Gadhafi's sons, hisformer national security adviser Muatassim, also was killed inSirte, and another, one-time heir apparent Seif al-Islam, waswounded and captured.
The 69-year-old Gadhafi is the first leader to be killed in theArab Spring wave of popular uprisings that swept the Middle East,demanding the end of autocratic rulers and the establishment ofgreater democracy.
"We have been waiting for this moment for a long time. MoammarGadhafi has been killed," Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril told anews conference in the capital of Tripoli.
His death decisively ends a regime that had turned Libya into aninternational pariah and ran the oil-rich nation by the whim andbrutality of its notoriously eccentric leader.
Libya stands on the cusp of a new era, but its turmoil may notbe over. The former rebels who now rule are disorganized and facerebuilding a country virtually without institutions by Gadhafi'sdesign. They have already shown signs of infighting, with divisionsbetween geographical areas and Islamist and more secularideologies.
President Barack Obama told the Libyan people: "You have wonyour revolution."
Although the U.S. briefly led the NATO bombing campaign in Libyathat sealed Gadhafi's fate, Washington later took a secondary roleto its allies. Britain and France said they hoped that his deathwould lead to a more democratic Libya.