Italy's Foreign Minister said the warrant issued at the end of the month would be a 'key moment' in the Libyan crisis, as the dictator today made his first public appearance in weeks.
Franco Frattini said the warrant would make it 'impossible' for the Libyan leader to leave the country in exile as 'all the international community would have legal obligations'.
Colonel Gaddafi has made his first public appearance for weeks after a NATO air strike on Tripoli killed his youngest son and three grandchildren.
The Libyan dictator - who was filmed talking with tribal leaders in a hotel in the capital - was last seen in public on April 9.
A projection screen behind him showed a morning chat show on state al-Jamahirya TV which displayed yesterday's date in one corner.
It seemed a very deliberate move to spike rumours - helped along by an official Nato spokesman yesterday - that he may have been killed by an air strike.
And there were more strikes directed at his compound this afternoon.
Gaddafi has been in hiding since the rocket attack which struck a house in Tripoli. The Libyan government said he and his wife were unhurt in the attack.
It comes as the leader of the rebels visited London this morning to drum up more aid for the conflict.
Mustafa Abdel Jalil, chairman of the Libyan National Transitional Council (NTC), met Prime Minister David Cameron, Foreign Secretary William Hague and Chancellor George Osborne.
The Foreign Office said the sides discussed providing more non-lethal equipment to the rebels and opening a permanent NTC office in London.
Britain has already sent body armour and telecommunications equipment to the rebels. Read More