Oct 12 (Reuters) - Here is a timeline of the civil war in Libya since protests against Muammar Gaddafi’s four-decade rule began in February:
Feb. 15/16, 2011 - The arrest of human rights activist Fethi Tarbel sparks a riot in Benghazi, Quryna newspaper reports.
Feb. 24 - Anti-government militias take control of central coastal city of Misrata after evicting forces loyal to Gaddafi.
Feb. 26 - The U.N. Security Council imposes sanctions on Gaddafi and his family, and refers Libya’s crackdown on rebels to the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Feb. 28 - EU governments approve a package of sanctions against Gaddafi and his closest advisers.
March 5 - The rebel National Transitional Council (NTC) in Benghazi declares itself the sole representative for Libya.
March 17 - The U.N. Security Council votes to authorise a no-fly zone over Libya and “all necessary measures” -- code for military action -- to protect civilians against Gaddafi’s army.
March 19 - The first air strikes halt the advance of Gaddafi’s forces on Benghazi and target Libya’s air defences.
April 30 - A NATO missile attack on a house in Tripoli kills Gaddafi’s youngest son and three grandchildren, his government says.
June 27 - The ICC issues arrest warrants for Gaddafi, his son Saif al-Islam and intelligence chief Abdullah al-Senussi on charges of crimes against humanity.
Aug. 21 - Rebels enter Tripoli with little resistance. Gaddafi makes audio addresses over state television calling on Libyans to fight off the rebel “rats”.
Aug. 23 - The rebels overrun Gaddafi’s fortified Bab al-Aziziya compound in Tripoli trashing the symbols of his rule.
Aug. 29 - Gaddafi’s wife, his daughter Aisha and two of his sons enter Algeria. Aisha Gaddafi gives birth in a clinic in a border town hours after crossing the frontier.
Sept. 1 - Libya’s interim rulers meet world leaders at a conference in Paris to discuss reshaping Libya. Gaddafi, on the 42nd anniversary of his coming to power, urges his supporters to fight on.
Sept. 8 - Interim prime minister Mahmoud Jibril arrives in Tripoli on his first visit since it was taken by his forces.
Sept. 11 - Libya has started producing oil again, Jibril says. Niger says Gaddafi’s son Saadi has arrived there.
Sept. 13 - Interim government chief Mustafa Abdel Jalil makes his first speech in Tripoli to a crowd of about 10,000.
Sept. 15 - France’s Nicolas Sarkozy and Britain’s David Cameron land in Libya to a heroes’ welcome, promising help for the new rulers.
Sept. 16 - The U.N. Security Council eases sanctions on Libya, including on its national oil company and central bank. The U.N. General Assembly approves a request to accredit interim government envoys as Libya’s sole representatives at the U.N., effectively recognizing the NTC.
Sept. 20 - U.S. President Barack Obama calls for the last of Gaddafi’s loyalist forces to surrender as he announces the return of the U.S. ambassador to Tripoli and pledges help. Gaddafi taunts NATO in a speech broadcast by Syrian-based Arrai television station.
Sept. 21 - The interim rulers say they have captured most of Sabha, one of three main towns where Gaddafi loyalists have been holding out since the fall of Tripoli. Gaddafi’s birthplace Sirte and the town of Bani Walid continue to resist.
Sept. 25 - The first Libyan crude oil to be shipped in months sails from the eastern port of Marsa el Hariga for Italy.
Sept. 26 - The investigation into the 1988 Lockerbie bombing is closed and Tripoli says it will not release more evidence that could lead to others being charged. Britain says the investigation “remains open”.
Sept. 27 - NATO says Libya’s interim rulers have taken full control of the country’s stockpile of chemical weapons and nuclear material.
Oct. 9 - NTC forces capture the main hospital at Sirte as well as the university and a lavish conference centre.
Oct. 12 - More than 80 percent of Sirte is under NTC control. NTC forces say they believe Gaddafi’s son Mo‘tassim, his father’s national security adviser, is still holed up there. (Reporting by David Cutler, London Editorial Reference Unit;)