(ROME) -- Moammar Gadhafi's regime weakened further after Libyan oil minister Shokri Ghanem announced his resignation at a news conference in Rome on Wednesday.
The National Oil Corporation head is the latest in a string of defections from within Gadhafi's inner circle. Ghanem is the highest profile defection to date leading to questions of how much longer Gadhafi will be able to stay in his position with waning support.
"I can't work in this situation so I have left my country and my job to join the choice made by young Libyans to fight for a democratic country," said Ghanem, who has not been seen in public for at least a week when he left Libya, added that the daily bloodshed was the reason for his resignation.
Ghanem joins the Libyan ambassador to Rome, who organized the press conference, and other officials including former Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa in abandoning Gadhafi's regime.
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