ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – People close to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi are looking for international help to negotiate his departure from power, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Thursday, as countries backing NATO’s military mission in Libya predicted Gadhafi’s demise may be imminent.

International donors meeting in Abu Dhabi pledged more than $1.3 billion to help support Libya’s main opposition group as it plans a strategy for a post-Gadhafi era, but opposition leaders grumbled that donors have been stingy and slow.

NATO intensified airstrikes against Gadhafi-held areas around the Libyan capital, but the opposition says rebels fighting to oust Gadhafi cannot hold on without more help.

“There have been numerous and continuing discussions by people close to Gadhafi and we are aware that those discussions include, among other matters, the potential for a transition,” Clinton told reporters after a meeting of top officials from the more than 30-member Contact Group on Libya.

Asked about reported overtures from Gadhafi loyalists to African nations for possible exile, Clinton would not speculate if any would be accepted. But she said decades of Gadhafi’s despotic rule were on the verge of collapse. Her comments were echoed by other officials at the conference in Abu Dhabi.

“Gadhafi’s days are numbered,” Clinton said. “We are working with our international partners through the U.N. to plan for the inevitable: a post-Gadhafi Libya.”

Gadhafi may be out sooner than many had predicted, said Australian Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd. “The momentum is decisively moving against the regime,” he said.

The military campaign had been in stalemate for weeks, with forces loyal to the strongman able to easily hold off rebel offensives. Rebels have taken control of swaths of eastern Libya, but Gadhafi remains in control of the capital, Tripoli. Gadhafi shows no signs of ceding power under the building pressure of NATO airstrikes, despite attacks on his compound, government buildings, military radar emplacements and other army installations

NATO airstrikes rattled the Libyan capital Thursday with clusters of bombing runs believed to have targeted the outskirts of Tripoli.