Nightly News | February 19, 2011
>> we turn over seas now with 15 people reported killed in lynn th libya . and something far different today and a victory for the people. nbc's richard engel is there again for us tonight.
>> reporter: they have been waiting more than a week to achieve. a victory by arriving in the center of the quick. it has been the center of the protest movement since it began. thousands were gathered peacefully here last week. a demonstration meant to replicate the revolution. before dawn on thursday, police and soldiers were sent on for a brutal crack down. four protesters were killed. the next day, the demonstrators returned and they were attacked. even as some opened their shirts exposing their chests to bullets. but the police and soldiers did fire, at least 50 people were injured sparking international condemnation and a call from president obama to the royal family . today the government posture was different. in the morning, the army pulled out of the city. protesters gathered at the edge of the square in a standoff with police. but this afternoon, the police also pulled back. the crowds suddenly rushed forward. men and women carrying flowers. it is rare for women to be out protesting here. now they are saying this is peaceful. thousands reached the square. their cries and shouts were emoti emotional. but the message was of peace. some men dropped to the ground in tears. their arrival a highly symbolic victory. and now the protesters tell us they are ready to negotiate.
>> i don't know what is wrong with us. everywhere in the world why not piece with us?
>> reporter: the crowned prince who ordered the security forces to withdraw said the time has come for dialogue. libya continues to take a hard line . human rights groups say dozens have been killed in the last three days. today 16 died when security forces fired on crowds of mourners. there are reports of defectses in the army and that libya has brought in mercinaries. these are the first images of the strong hold where the government is offering $2,000 payments to keep citizens loyal. but libya has banned western journalists. the only images have come on line. today even those were rare as the state cut the internet for hours. today opted for dialogue. libya for violence.