Libya's second largest city of Benghazi which has been seized by the country's opposition protesting against Muammar Gaddafi is celebrating victory and trying to return to normal life, local media said.
Thousands of Libyans are dancing on the main square of the city dubbed 'Free Benghazi' holding posters demanding the end of the 42-year-rule of the country's embattled leader, accused of human rights abuses.
Local citizens, who have formed defense committees to ensure security of public life and property, are collecting weapons and urging people to open shops, offices, cafes and restaurants and not to increase prices.
"No to looting and robbery in Benghazi!" posters say.
According to international organizations, 640 people have been killed and up to 4,000 wounded in clashes with government forces in Libya since protests against Gaddafi's regime began on February 15.
Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini said earlier up to 1,000 people have so far been killed across Libya.
CAIRO, February 23 (RIA Novosti)