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Tripoli residents struggle with severe shortages

Tripoli residents struggle with severe shortages
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Saturday has seen less fighting in Tripoli, although there have been clashes in some areas and

rebel checkpoints continue to seek out Gaddafi loyalists.

The city’s people however are struggling to cope with a breakdown in basic services. There are widespread shortages, although the opposition National Transitional Council says fuel and water supplies should arrive in the capital on Sunday.

There are few signs of life. In some areas people have been burning rubbish to stave of disease.

Some residents have emerged from hiding.

“Of course we need food and safety, and we want to start preparing for Eid, that’s all I want to say,” said one woman as she walked with her family.

Another resident called on the rebels, in control of most of the city, to open shops and markets.

Fighting along the coastal road from Tunisia is preventing supplies from getting through, although the border post of Ras Jdir has been captured by the rebels.

The rebel command said Gaddafi forces had been shelling the road, although they hoped to gain control of it within the next few hours.

Britain has promised more than three million euros in urgent aid to the International Committee of the Red Cross.