NATO warplanes hit Libyan capital `command centre`
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Last Updated: Saturday, July 23, 2011, 23:47
  
Tripoli: NATO-led warplanes struck the Libyan capital early on Saturday, with the alliance saying they hit a military command centre and Muammar Gaddafi's regime saying that civilians were targeted.

At least seven powerful explosions were heard at around 2:20 am (0020 GMT), as state television quoted a military official as saying NATO aircraft "are currently bombing civilian sites in the capital Tripoli."

In Brussels, an Atlantic alliance official said "NATO can confirm that we targeted military objectives in Tripoli this morning," and that the the seven strikes were on a command and control node.

Two more explosions were heard in the same area at about midday.

The attack came after rebel forces said they had lost 16 fighters east of Tripoli and that they infiltrated the capital and attacked a regime command post where a son of the strongman was among officials targeted.

The rebels, who have been fighting to oust Gaddafi for more than five months, said the assault "seriously injured" a high-ranking member of Gaddafi's security forces.

"Yesterday (Thursday) in Tripoli, there was an attack on an operations centre of top regime officials, including Seif al-Islam Gaddafi," National Transitional Council vice president Ali Essawy said after meeting Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini in Rome.

"One person was left seriously injured," he said, identifying the person as a high-ranking security official.

PTI


First Published: Saturday, July 23, 2011, 23:47


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