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Aug 22, 2011 12:32 AM by Matt Stafford

Obama: Libya slipping from grasp of tyrant

VINEYARD HAVEN, Mass. (AP) - President Barack Obama says Libya is "slipping from the grasp of a tyrant" as the battle between rebels and longtime leader Moammar Gadhafi has reached a "tipping point."

In a statement issued Sunday from Martha's Vineyard, where he's vacationing, Obama said the surest way for the bloodshed to end is for Moammar Gadhafi to relinquish power.

The president said, "The future of Libya is now in the hands of the Libyan people." The rebels seized control of much of Libya's capital, Tripoli, on Sunday.

Obama's statement came after a Sunday evening conference call with his national security team.

He promised to work in close coordination with the rebels and said the U.S. will "continue to insist that the basic rights of the Libyan people are respected."

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