Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Emmanuel Macron: A new economy minister with a pro-business agenda

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

#TECH 24

Changing the world, one video game at a time

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Socialist Party summer conference kicks off in explosive atmosphere

Read more

  • EU leaders choose Tusk and Mogherini for top jobs, discuss Russia sanctions

    Read more

  • Dozens of UN peacekeepers still held by Syrian jihadists

    Read more

  • Opposition protesters clash with Pakistani police outside PM's house

    Read more

  • Austerity row overshadows French Socialist’s annual rally

    Read more

  • Egypt sentences Brotherhood leader Badie to life

    Read more

  • Ceasfire allows Gaza families to relax on the beach

    Read more

  • S. Africa condemns 'military coup' in Lesotho

    Read more

  • Kerry calls for 'coalition of nations' to battle IS militants

    Read more

  • Ukrainian plane with seven on board crashes in Algeria

    Read more

  • Exclusive: Fabius warns Russia of more sanctions

    Read more

  • IMF backs Lagarde amid French corruption probe

    Read more

  • Ebola drug ‘ZMapp’ heals all monkeys in study

    Read more

  • British killer escapes from French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

  • Police hunt for British boy with brain tumour taken to France

    Read more

  • Ukraine to relaunch NATO membership bid

    Read more

  • Suriname leader’s son pleads guilty to courting Hezbollah

    Read more

  • Mapping Ukraine: Canada and Russia in ‘tweet for tat’ row

    Read more

Africa

Fighting intensifies in besieged Misrata

Video by Alexander TURNBULL

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-04-17

Conditions in the rebel-held Misrata were getting increasingly desperate Sunday, as Muammar Gaddafi’s forces bombarded the city for the fourth straight day. Libya's third-largest city has been under siege by pro-Gaddafi troops for seven weeks.

REUTERS - Muammar Gaddafi's forces bombarded Misrata heavily for a fourth day on Sunday, rebels said, and evacuees said conditions inside the besieged Libyan city were becoming increasingly desperate.

A rebel spokesman, Abdel Basset Mezerik, told Al Jazeera television at least six people were killed and 47 wounded in the early morning in the insurgents' last major stronghold in the west of the country.
 
Libya's third-largest city has been under siege by pro-Gaddafi troops for about seven weeks. Hundreds of people are believed to have been killed there.
 
"The bombardment is still going on," a rebel who declined to be named told Reuters by phone from the coastal city.
 
The insurgents said on Saturday that pro-government forces pounded the city with mortars and rockets, targeting a dairy plant, a day after a Western rights group accused Gaddafi loyalists of using cluster bombs. Libya denied it.
 
Libyan officials say they are fighting armed militia with ties to al Qaeda bent on destroying the country, denying government troops are shelling Misrata.
 
But evacuees who arrived in neighbouring Tunisia at the weekend, including at least one wounded rebel, said the city was being targeted day and night.
 
"Everyday people are dying," one teenager said, lying in a hospital bed in the Tunisian city of Sfax. He and dozens of other wounded were taken to Tunisia by boat operated by the medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF).
 
Misrata residents "terrified"
 
He said he had decided to take up arms as fighting escalated last month because all his friends were, but that sniper fire wounded him in the stomach and thigh.
 
"I started fighting because everyone else was," the 17-year-old said, declining to be named.
 
Looking for snipers in Misrata
MSF evacuated 99 people from the city on Friday, of which 64 were wounded -- mainly from gunshots or shrapnel.
 
One of the wounded brought by ambulance to Sfax from the port of Zarzis, where the boat docked, had the black-green-red rebel flag draped over his stretcher.
 
Ibrahim Ali, who accompanied his wounded neighbour on the MSF boat, said fighting in Misrata was getting worse by the day.
 
"People are terrified," he said.
 
Yussef, who arrived on another MSF boat two weeks ago with his wounded brother, said he had gone to greet the new arrivals.
 
"They all said the same thing -- they (government forces) can't stop shooting, it is non-stop," he said in broken English.
 
Residents say they and thousands of stranded migrant workers face shortages of basic foodstuffs and medical supplies and have only sporadic water and electricity.
 
"It is terrible, a disaster. Some families try to go to safer areas, some live all together in cramped conditions to be safe," Yussef said, giving only his first name.
 
Ali echoed rebel calls for more urgent action from NATO. "The people of Misrata are asking that they do more to save them," he said.
 

 

Date created : 2011-04-17

  • FRANCE 24 EXCLUSIVE

    Beleaguered rebels fight on in Misrata

    Read more

  • LIBYA

    Rockets pound ghost city as allies say Gaddafi must go

    Read more

  • LIBYA

    British, French, US leaders rule out future with Gaddafi

    Read more

COMMENT(S)