Gaddafi forces advance

Ajdabiya, Libya – Advancing pro-government forces shelled retreating rebel fighters west of Ajdabiya today, an AFP correspondent in the key Libyan road junction town heard.

At least 10 loud explosions rocked the outskirts of the town in a major setback for the rebels, who earlier in the day had pushed towards the oil refinery town of Brega on the central coast, 80km further west.

The rebels had even allowed foreign journalists to advance halfway to Brega to a point where they established a supply base behind their shortlived front lines, the first time they had done so since Wednesday.

Dozens of cars and military vehicles were seen pouring east out of Ajdabiya towards the rebel stronghold of Benghazi using both carriageways of the main highway.

Anti-aircraft guns and rocket-launchers were seen taking up defensive positions at intervals along the highway to cover the retreat.

Rebel fighters launched off a salvo of Grad rockets from the town’s eastern outskirts as the AFP correspondent drove out towards Benghazi.

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