As United Nations resolution-backed coalition forces continue to enforce a no-fly zone in Libya, it has been reported that US and Danish fighter jets and US military drones have been taking off from a bases in Italy. The French Defence Ministry has also confirmed that 15 aircraft flew over Libya on Saturday and met with no resistance.
US and British forces have fired 110 Tomahawk missiles (pictured) into Libya from warships and submarines. Additionally, the UAE and Qatar are sending aircraft to participate in enforcing the no-fly zone.
Libya’s military has reportedly issued an order to its armed forces to commence an immediate ceasefire, on the second night of coalition air strikes. The US has dismissed the announcement, saying the ceasefire had immediately been violated.
On NBC’s ‘Meet the Press’, Obama’s top military advisor, Admiral Mike Mullen, has insisted the campaign in Libya is not about so-called regime change, saying, “It isn’t about seeing him go (Gaddafi), it’s about supporting the United Nations resolution (1973) which talks to eliminating the ability to kill his own people”.
The BBC has reported there has been an apparent attack on Col Gaddafi’s compound in Tipoli. The US still maintains that Giddafi himself is not a target of the air strikes.
The Secretary General of the Arab League, Amr Moussa, has criticized coalition military attacks on Libyan forces, saying they go beyond what his organiszation agreed last week, and that they endanger civilians. The endorsement of the 22-member Arab League was considered an essential pre-condition for the military intervention authorised by the United Nations on Friday.
“What is happening in Libya differs from the aim of imposing a no-fly zone, and what we want is the protection of civilians and not the shelling of more civilians,” said Moussa, according to Egypt’s state news agency.
Below is an Al Jazeera item about pro-democracy fighters celebrating in the second Libyan city of Benghazi, after French jets demolished Muammar Gaddafi’s heavy armor that was heading their way. The site of the attack was visited.
Feature image: Seen through night-vision lenses aboard amphibious transport dock USS Ponce, the guided missile destroyer USS Barry fires Tomahawk cruise missiles in support of Operation Odyssey Dawn DVIDSHUB
Bottom image: USS Stout launches a Tomahawk missile in support of Operation Odyssey Dawn Official U.S. Navy Imagery