Rebels suffer heavy casualties in battle for Brega

Rebels suffer heavy casualties in battle for Brega
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The battle for the Libyan oil town of Brega continued on Sunday as rebels clashed with Colonel Muammar Gaddafi’s troops.

The AFP news agency reported that fighting had moved from the desert on Brega’s outskirts to the streets in the centre.

Medics at Benghazi Hospital said 12 people died in Saturday’s fighting and as many as 200 were injured. There were no immediate reports on casualties from Sunday’s clashes.

Gaddafi took Brega in April and the rebels have made repeated efforts to seize the town since then.

Overnight, NATO jets struck the Libya leader’s Tripoli stronghold, destroying what the alliance called “a military storage facility.”

NATO said it also struck three radar sites and an anti-aircraft missile launcher just east of the Libyan capital.

On Saturday in Zawiyah, some 50 kilometres west of Tripoli, state television broadcast footage of thousands of people taking part in a pro-regime rally.

Gaddafi addressed his supporters on an audio message, scoffing at reports that he was about to step down.

His defiance came as the United States and other Western powers recognised the rebel council as the legitimate government of Libya.