Libyans are rejoicing at the news that once-feared dictator Muammar Gaddafi has been killed in his hometown of Sirte. Keep updated with the latest developments here. All times in AEDT
8.33am: Today may be a day of celebration for Libya, but big challenges await. Con Coughlin from London's Daily Telegraph reminds us that in Iraq, the worst sectarian violence took place after Saddam Hussein's caputure - not before.
"While these tribal divisions have become blurred during the Gaddafi era, the strong passions they inspire can still be detected within the NTC [National Transitional Council], where some opposition groups have objected to the dominant influence of Benghazi-based tribes over those from other parts of the country. The other challenge that the NTC must contend with is the growing influence of Islamist groups throughout Libya."
8.24am: Gaddafi's final moments were marked by the same brutality that came to symbolise his regime.
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Television footage shows a clearly alive Gaddafi being taken from Sirte after being discovered hiding in a sewerage pipe during a final battle between loyalist and rebel fighters
However subsequent photos, which Fairfax has chosen not to publish due to their graphic content, show the dictator's blood-soaked body collapsed on the ground.
A sense of the passion surrounding this event can be felt in the words of one rebel fighter, Mohammed Shaban, who told AFP he had taken part in Gaddafi's capture.
"His blood is on my shirt. I'll never wash it."
8.14am: Amazing footage of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reacting to news of Gaddafi's death. Famous last words you might say.
8.05am: News of the dictator's death have already been greeted worldwide. Bulgarian nurses imprisoned in Libya for eight years over an HIV scandal have welcomed news, saying the deposed Libyan strongman had "got what he deserved".
"The news made me very happy. It's a punishment. A dog like him deserved to die like a dog," Valya Chervenyashka said. She, along with four other Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian-born doctor, was jailed in 1999, tortured and twice sentenced to death under Gaddafi's regime.
Five nurses and the Palestinian doctor became known as the "Benghazi six" after they were jailed in Libya in 1999 for allegedly infecting 438 children with HIV-tainted blood at a paediatric hospital in Benghazi. Experts, including Luc Montagnier, the French virologist credited with co-discovering the HIV virus, testified however that the epidemic was due to poor hygiene.
8.01am: There have been several reports that Gaddafi was brandishing a golden gun at the time of his capture. Images have just surfaced of rebel soldiers brandishing the firearm, an elaborate pistol with a wooden handle.
7.54am: Fairfax Middle East correspondent Ruth Pollard, who has been reporting from the ground in Libya during the height of the unrest, says the death of Gaddafi will touch all Libyans.
"What we're seeing now in Sirte is rebel forces going street by street by street to make sure that there are no pockets of Gaddafi loyalists left in that town.
"People in Libya have been waiting for this moment for so long. Until Gaddafi was captured or killed there was still a lot of fear among the locals that he could somehow stage a comeback or commit an act of terror that Would result in the deaths of many Libyans.
"And even if he didn't do that, his ongoing presence in the country and the rebel forces' inability to capture him could have hung over the heads of the national transitional council and made everything a lot more unstable than it really needed to be.
"So this should provide a big boost to the NTC and hopefully allow it to get on with the really complicated process of moving Libya towards becoming a democracy."
7.35am: US president Barack Obama is one of the first world leaders to welcome the death of Gaddafi.
"Today we can definitively say that the Qaddafi regime has come to an end," Obama said in remarks in the White House Rose Garden. Speaking to the Libyan people, Obama said, "You have won your revolution." Libya now must travel "a long and winding road to full democracy," he said, adding "there will be difficult days ahead."
Obama committed the US to a NATO-led campaign in Libya in March, a move that at the time drew criticism from some members of Congress. He said today the demise of Gaddafi's regime vindicated his strategy of bringing together allies to meet the objective of supporting the Libyan rebels without putting US troops on the ground.
It also follows other US successes overseas, he said. "This comes at a time when we see the strength of American leadership across the world,"Obama said. "We've taken out al-Qaeda leaders, and we've put them on the path to defeat. We're winding down the war in Iraq, and have begun a transition in Afghanistan.
"And now, working in Libya with friends and allies, we've demonstrated what collective action can achieve in the 21st century," he said.
7.20am: More details are already emerging of Gaddafi's violent end, with Libya's rebel leaders rejoicing in the fact that their former president was found cowering in a sewerage pipe.
"Gaddafi was in a jeep when rebels opened fire on it," National Transitional Council (NTC) field commander Mohammed Leith said.
"He got out and tried to flee, taking shelter in a sewage pipe." NTC fighters "opened fire again and he came out carrying a Kalashnikov (assault rifle) in one hand and a pistol in the other," he said.
Gaddafi "looked left and right and asked what was happening. Rebels opened fire again, wounding his leg and shoulder. He died after that," according to Leith.
7.08am: Libyans are celebrating in the streets as news spreads of Muammar Gaddafi's death after a firefight in his hometown of Sirte overnight.
In a symbolic final revolt against the man who ruled over the country with an iron fist, Gaddafi was overrun by rebels following a sustained assault on Sirte.
Interim Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril confirmed news of the death this morning, saying Gaddafi's body would be delivered, a prize of war, to Misrata, the city whose siege and suffering at the hands of Gaddafi's forces made it a symbol of the rebel cause.
The head of Libya's National Transitional Council Mohammed Leith this morning confirmed the ousted tyrant was finally captured in a sewage pipe waving a golden gun