A Friday post on Al Jazeera English's live blog from Libya cited a rebel minister in Tripoli who said forces searching for deposed leader Col. Muammar Qaddafi "were surrounding an area of Tripoli where Muammar Gaddafi and his entourage were hiding and were monitoring their presence before attempting to capture them." The news, initially reported by Reuters, could mean the rebels are close to capturing the one-time dictator, but it's not going to mean nearly as much following a similar claim on Thursday that turned out to be without substance. In that incident, a fighter told Reuters that the forces had Qaddafi and his people cornered "in a small hole." Friday's report comes not from fighters on the ground, where the situation changes quickly, but from Justice Minister Mohammed al-Alagi, for what that's worth. Al-Alagi didn't specify where Qaddafi was, unlike the fighters on Thursday, who were operating at an apartment building near his old compound. So while the report should be greeted with skepticism in light of Thursday's news, it has some hallmarks of a more viable announcement. We'll keep you updated.
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