Gadhafi whereabouts not known immediately after missile strike

Posted by BBC News on Mar 21st, 2011 and filed under Latest News Update. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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Latest News Update : Gadhafi whereabouts not known immediately after missile strike

fighterTripoli, Libya (BBC News Blog) — The heart of Moammar Gadhafi’s compound in Tripoli lay in shambles Monday following bombing from the United states of america and its allies, prompting a debate about regardless of whether the allies were seeking to destroy the Libyan leader.

A coalition military official insisted neither Gadhafi nor his residence were intended targets of the bombing late Sunday. The official — who was not becoming recognized due to the sensitivity of your information — claimed the compound was targeted for the reason that it contained command-and-control services for Libyan forces.

U.S. Vice Adm. Bill Gortney concurred. “We are certainly not going after Gadhafi,” he mentioned at a Pentagon press briefing. Asked about reviews of smoke growing from your area ofce, Gadhafi’s pala  Gortney reported, “We will not be targeting his residence.”

Retired U.S. Navy Capt. Alec Fraser proposed that Gadhafi may conclude up getting a casualty even if he was not the intended target, but indicated he would not blame the coalition if that transpition.

“If he takes place to get someplace that they are striking, that’s his trouble,” he explained on BBC News Blog “American Morning” Monday.

Gadhafi’s whereabouts — and his strategies just after promising a “long-drawn war” — remained not known Monday.

But a witness within the Libyan metropolis of Misrata noted “absolute destruction and carnage” by Gadhafi forces on Monday — irrespective of the regime’s latest contact to get a cease-fire.

“Misrata is becoming flattened and razed with the ground as we communicate,” reported the gentleman, whom BBC News Blog is not naming to protect his security. “He (Gadhafi) is making use of tanks and snipers to terrorize the metropolis.”

He extra, “They are shooting people today from the major road and around the again street.”

The Libyan military announcde the cease-fire immediately after an attack in close proximity to Benghazi — the heart in the Libyan opposition forces. Coalition forces pounded a Libyan military convoy there Sunday. Not less than 70 cars — like armored personnel carriers and tanks — were destroyed.

When asked with regards to the probability of attempting to kill Gadhafi to conclude his regime, U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates stated it could be “unwise” to set distinct objectives.

“I imagine that it can be important that we run inside the mandate with the U.N. Protection Council resolution,” Gates advised reporters Sunday while on the plane to Russia. “If we start out adding additional objectives, then I believe we build an issue in that respect. I also imagine that it’s unwise to set as unique ambitions, things that you may possibly or could not be able to realize.”

The Safety Council resolution, which passed Thursday, lets member states “to consider all important measures to protect civilians beneath threat of assault while in the country … although excluding a foreign occupation force of any sort on any part of Libyan territory.”

Gates studiously averted mentioning Libya in St. Petersburg, Russia, in his physical appearance with Russian military officials Monday. Russia has been essential of your air bombardment of Libya.

BBC News Blog was amid numerous Western journalists taken within Gadhafi’s bombed compound by Libyan officials to survey the destruction.

Robertson documented a four-story making was heavily broken, potentially by cruise missiles. He held a chunk of metal retrieved from the internet site — with writing in English — that appeared to become from a missile.

A Libyan governenmt official stated the making was made use of by Gadhafi officials and claimed there were no casualties from your strike.

The constructing is only 100 yards or so from a statue of the golden fist crushing a model plane emblazoned with “USA” — a monument to the 1986 American bombing of Libya, through which a U.S. plane was shot down.

Not all nations concur with foreign attacks in Libya. The Russian government said the mission has killed innocent civilians and urged much more caution. The Foreign Ministry in Moscow cited reviews that “nonmilitary” targets were currently being bombed, including a cardiac middle. India, China and Venezuela have also spoken out in opposition to the airstrikes.

Arab League Secretary-General Amre Moussa advised reporters Sunday that what exactly is happening in Libya is different from what was meant by imposing a no-fly zone, according to Egypt’s al-Ahram newspaper.

“What we want is the safety of civilians and not the shelling of a lot more civilians,” he claimed. He additional that “military operations may possibly not be required so that you can secure the civilians.”

But Arab League chief of staff Hisham Youssef explained Moussa’s remarks didn’t signify a shift from the organization.

“The Arab League place has not transformed. We absolutely support the implementation of a no-fly zone,” Youssef explained. “Our ultimate intention is usually to finish the bloodshed and achieve the aspirations on the Libyan persons.”

goon — who met with Moussa other planet leaders to examine Libya on SaturU.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-mday — said help from Arab leaders was important towards the Security Council’s conclusion.

“The solid recommendation by the league of Arab states to get decisive measures — together with the establishment of the no-fly zone — figured prominently in the adoption on the Security Council resolution,” Ban told reporters in Egypt on Monday. “This decisive measure is meant to safeguard the civilian population, who’re getting killed by Col. Gadhafi and his regime.”

Ban was briefly mobbed by demonstrators chanting “Down with USA!” in Cairo, his spokesman Khawla Mattar mentioned, including that it was “not a really serious incident.”

The Libyan authorities has claimed that 48 folks, typically gals, children and clerics, have died in allied attacks.

Nonetheless, Gortney, the U.S. vice admiral, mentioned, “We don’t have any indication of any civilian casualties.”

And France — which carried out the first strike in Libya on Saturday when fighter jets fired at a military automobile — also disputed claims of civilian deaths.

“There is no information and facts of killed civilians recorded through the French command,” French federal government spokesman Francois Baroin claimed Monday about the French Tv channel Canal . “We have to be cautious of communication campaigns and propaganda.”

Ahmed Gebreel, a member of your Libyan opposition, told BBC News Blog  the Gadhafi government collected bodies of individuals killed in fighting in the previous week and displayed them more than the weekend, seeking to display they had been killed by coalition airstrikes.

The British Ministry of Defence said it halted a mission to attack a target in Libya just after information and facts surfaced about civilians while in the place.

“As the RAF GR4 Tornados moved in to the area, further more information and facts arrived to light that identified quite a few civilians inside the meant target spot,” the ministry stated in the statement Monday. “As a result the judgement was taken to not launch weapons. This choice underlines the UK’s commitment for the protection of civilians.”

From the coming days, U.S. officials claimed they plan to hand above operational control of your military mission. The coalition has nine other announced partners: Belgium, Britain, Canada, Denmark, France, Italy, Norway, Qatar and Spain.

“One on the things that was very much on (U.S. President Barack Obama’s) brain would be the significance of the meaningful coalition, which means other nations doing really serious military contributions so america isn’t carrying the preeminent obligation for an indefinite time frame,” Gates explained.

As of Sunday night time, america and British military had fired a complete of 124 Tomahawk cruise missiles at Libya’s air defense web pages, Gortney reported.

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