NEAR BANI WALID - Tribal elders from the besieged town of Bani Walid, a bastion of support for Muammar Gaddafi, came out negotiate on Sunday with fighters for Libya's interim government who have said they are ready to attack.
Earlier on Sunday a National Transitional Council (NTC) negotiator told a Reuters correspondent at the scene that talks had broken down and that its forces were about to take the town.
But, several hours later, elders from the town arrived at a frontline checkpoint, some 60 km (40 miles) north of Bani Walid. Sitting in the shade of a building, the men, dressed in flowing white robes, and NTC negotiators in military fatigues and with rifles slung over their shoulders huddled in conversation.
"We do not want to solve this militarily," NTC negotiator Abusif Ghnyah told Reuters at the front line. "We don't want to fire even a single shot. We don't want blood."