TRIPOLI (AFP/Reuters) - Libyan leader Moamer Gaddafi Tuesday marked the 40th anniversary of the bloodless coup that brought him to power with celebrations attended by African, Arab and Latin American leaders but largely ignored by the West. Gaddafis party kicked off around midnight on Monday at the former US military base of Matega near Tripoli with a two-hour spectacle morning that paid homage to the leader himself and featured music, illuminations and dance. Entitled A Knight and Men, the display was marked by a procession of some 30 floats - one with a giant picture of the leader in military uniform - and performances by dancers and horsemen from Libya, Tunisia, Morocco, Egypt and Ukraine. Gaddafis party included a military parade, air show, fireworks and a son-et-lumiere performance with dancers depicting Libyas past and modern history. Tripolis streets had been decked with thousands of multicoloured lights, and hundreds of Gaddafi portraits and placards paying tribute to the leader, including one saying: May Glory Be Yours, Oh Maker of Glories. Gaddafis invited guests included Pakistan PM Yousuf Raza Gilani, Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas, African leaders who had earlier attended an African Union summit in Libya, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, his Dominican counterpart Leonel Fernandez, Serbian leader Boris Tadic and Philippine President Gloria Arroyo. Gaddafi, who once described himself as leader of the Arab leaders, the king of kings of Africa and the imam of the Muslims, had also invited a string of European leaders who, however, stayed away. Ties have improved markedly with the West but suffered a major hiccup last month when the north African country gave a heros welcome to the man convicted of the Lockerbie aircraft bombing. The public celebration of Abdelbaset Ali Mohmet al-Megrahis return home came despite US warnings that any such welcome would damage relations that have been improving since Tripoli renounced its pursuit of weapons of mass destruction in 2003. Scottish authorities freed Megrahi on compassionate grounds but critics in London charge that his release was linked to oil contracts in Libya. Gaddafi himself is now being welcomed in European capitals after many years of his regime was viewed as a pariah and supporter of terrorism. The six days of celebrations across the north African country were designed to get the message across to the world that the long-isolated oil exporter was open again for business after years of heavy sanctions, organisers said. Libya is opening up to the world - that is the basic message, said Philippe Skaff, who heads the team coordinating the centrepiece celebration event. It includes companies from France and Britain. This is the first time they actually received thousands of foreigners with open arms. They are granting visas for this like theyve never done before, he said. Libya has cut support for armed revolutionary groups around the world and made peace with Washington by scrapping a programme to build nuclear weapons and paying compensation for bombings and other attacks for which it was blamed by the West. The grand finale, a 90-minute show on Tuesday retraced the 40 years since the 27-year-old colonel ousted King Idriss in a 1969 coup. The New York-based group Human Rights Watch on Tuesday called on Gaddafi to mark the anniversary by wiping repressive laws off the books and freeing political prisoners. Gaddafis Great Green Charter of Human Rights promised that 'all human beings will be free and equal in the exercise of power, said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East and North Africa director. Forty years later, Libyans are still waiting for their rights.