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World leaders react to Gadhafi's death

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Mahmoud Al Nacoua, Libyan ambassador to the United Kingdom (Source: CNN) Mahmoud Al Nacoua, Libyan ambassador to the United Kingdom (Source: CNN)
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton (Source: CNN) Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton (Source: CNN)
U.S. Sen. John McCain, R-AZ, ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee (Source: CNN) U.S. Sen. John McCain, R-AZ, ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee (Source: CNN)
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (Source: CNN) United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (Source: CNN)
UK Prime Minister David Cameron (Source: CNN) UK Prime Minister David Cameron (Source: CNN)
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(RNN) - Emphasizing a long road ahead for the embattled nation of Libya, the world's leaders shared their reactions of ousted dictator Moammar Gadhafi's death Thursday.

Mahmoud Al Nacoua, Libyan ambassador to the United Kingdom, speaking to reporters:

"The Libyan freedom fighters have finally succeeded in drawing the curtain on Gadhafi's crimes. Their brave actions have spared Libya and the world from any further suffering of his evils. Today, Libya - Libya's future - begins. Gadhafi's black era has come to an end - forever."

Why is Gadhafi's name so hard to spell?

Take a close look at the story to your right, and you'll notice that the same person's name is spelled different ways.

First, it's Moammar Gadhafi. Then it's Muammar Qadhafi.

And it doesn't stop there. According to ABC News, who prefers the spelling Moammar Gaddafi, there are 112 ways to spell the name of the now-dead Libyan dictator.

The Library of Congress alone has recorded 72 different spellings, ABC reports.

The problem arises because of the difficulty in translating Arabic characters into English letters.

There is "no universally accepted authority for transliterating Arabic names," according to The Christian Science Monitor (CSM).

And Gadhafi hasn't made things simpler on editors, because he has not once provided a translation for his name. He even spells it different ways on his own website, CSM writer Eoin O'Carroll writes.

But the madness isn't even as simple as choosing a spelling for Gadhafi's first and last names.

"You then have to decide whether you want to add the Arabic prefix 'al-' before his last name, which can also be spelled 'el-,'" O'Carroll reports. "And then you have to decide whether the prefix should be capitalized."

U.S. President Barack Obama, speaking from the White House rose garden:

"Today, the government of Libya announced the death of Moammar Gadhafi. This marks the end of a long and painful chapter for the people of Libya, who can now have the opportunity to determine their own destiny in a new and democratic Libya."

U.S. Sen. Carl Levin, D-MI, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, in a statement:

"The end of the Muammar Qadhafi era is a victory for the people of Libya. The success of the Libyan people in rising up to overthrow a tyrant is a blow against dictatorship everywhere.

"His defeat would not have happened without the assistance of an international coalition in which U.S. leadership played an important role. I commend President Obama for his decision to help assemble and coordinate a powerful international coalition, supported by the United Nations and the Arab League, that helped bring an end to the Qadhafi regime."

U.S. Sen. John McCain, R-AZ, ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, in a statement:

"The death of Muammar Qaddafi marks an end to the first phase of the Libyan revolution.  While some final fighting continues, the Libyan people have liberated their country.  Now the Libyan people can focus all of their immense talents on strengthening their national unity, rebuilding their country and economy, proceeding with their democratic transition, and safeguarding the dignity and human rights of all Libyans.  The United States, along with our European allies and Arab partners, must now deepen our support for the Libyan people, as they work to make the next phase of their democratic revolution as successful as the fight to free their country."

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, speaking to reporters:

"We've had a bunch of those before. We've had - you know - have had him captured a couple of times."

Note: Clinton's reaction to at the time unconfirmed reports of Gadhafi's capture were caught on tape. The secretary has yet to issue her official reaction to the dictator's death.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, speaking to reporters at UN headquarters in New York:

"Clearly, this day marks an historic transition for Libya. In the coming days, we will witness scenes of celebration, as well as grief for those who lost so much. Yet let us recognize, immediately, that this is only the end of the beginning. The road ahead for Libya and its people will be difficult and full of challenges."

UK Prime Minister David Cameron, speaking outside of 10 Downing Street:

"I think today is a day to remember all of Colonel Qadhafi's victims, from those who died in connection with the Pan-Am flight over Lockerbie to Yvonne Fletcher in a London street and obviously all the victims of IRA terrorism who died through their use of Libyan Semtex.

"We should also remember the many, many Libyans who died at the hands of this brutal dictator and his regime.

"People in Libya today have an even greater chance, after this news, of building themselves a strong and democratic future.

"I'm proud of the role that Britain has played in helping them to bring that about and I pay tribute to the bravery of the Libyans who have helped to liberate their country.

"We will help them, we will work with them and that is what I want to say today."


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