Gaddafi forces bombard Misrata
Benghazi - Forces loyal to Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi
fired at least 100 Grad rockets into Misrata on Saturday, a rebel spokesperson
said, in a third day of heavy bombardment of the rebel-held city.
Misrata is the rebels' only major bastion in the western
part of Libya. Pro-Gaddafi forces have laid siege to it for seven weeks after
cities across the coast rose up against the Libyan leader's four-decade rule in
"They fired Grads at an industrial area this morning,
at least 100 rockets were fired. No casualties are reported," Abdelbasset
Abu Mzereiq told Reuters by telephone.
In the east, rebel military leader, Abdel Fattah Younes,
said his forces were engaged in fierce fighting in Brega, west of Benghazi, and
said he hoped he would have "good news" soon.
"We have people who are positioned at the entrance to
Brega, they have cleared out some snipers. We've basically cleared out
Gaddaffi's forces from the eastern outskirts," rebel commander Jibril
Mohammed Jibril said on Saturday on the fringes of Ajdabiyah, the nearest town
to Brega still under rebel control.
A rebel at the entrance to Ajdabiyah said rebels were still
being ambushed by government forces along the main highway linking the two
towns. Artillery fire was heard coming from the direction of Brega, but it was
unclear who was firing, he said.
More than 100 rockets landed in Misrata on Friday as well,
and rebels said government forces had reached the city centre.
Human Rights Watch said it had evidence Gaddafi's forces
were firing cluster bombs into residential areas of Misrata. It published
photographs of what it said were Spanish-produced cluster bombs, which release
grenades designed to explode into fragments and kill the maximum number of
Rebel spokesperson Abdelsalam in Misrata said pro-Gaddafi
forces had on Friday also shelled the road leading to the port, a lifeline for
trapped civilians and the main entry point for international aid agencies,
killing eight people.
"Today was very tough ... Gaddafi's forces entered
Tripoli Street and Nakl al Theqeel road," he said by phone, referring to a
main Misrata thoroughfare.
"Witnesses said they saw pro-Gaddafi soldiers on foot
in the city centre today. Except for snipers, they usually stay in their tanks
and armoured vehicles," the spokesperson said.
A government reconnaissance helicopter had flown over the
city, he said, despite a no-fly zone mandated by the UN Security Council and
enforced by Nato warplanes.