Tripoli: An administrative building of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi’s residence in Tripoli was totally destroyed after it was hit by a missile.

"This was a barbaric bombing which could have hit hundreds of civilians gathered at the residence of Muammar Gaddafi about 400 metres away from the building which was hit," Libyan spokesman Moussa Ibrahim said.

Denouncing contradictions in western discourses, he said, “Western countries say they want to protect civilians while they bomb the residence knowing there are civilians inside."

Scores of Gaddafi supporters rushed towards the complex at Bab el-Aziziya in the south of the Libyan capital after a rumour spread that a plane had been shot down and crashed.

Smoke billowed from the residence and barracks as anti-aircraft guns fired shots.

Gaddafi's army announced a new ceasefire on Sunday, saying it was heeding an African Union call for an immediate cessation of hostilities, but the United States accused Tripoli of breaching the truce almost immediately.

"I sincerely hope and urge the Libyan authorities to keep their word," United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said in a swift reaction during a visit to Libya's eastern neighbour Egypt.

Gaddafi's regime had declared a ceasefire on Friday after UN Security Council resolution 1973 authorised any necessary measures, including a no-fly zone, to stop his forces harming civilians in the fight against the rebels.

(Agencies)