NATO sends planes to Libya
Libya, March 19, 2011
The French government sent a set of Rafale model fighters with the mission of “recognition of the whole Libyan territory”, military sources said.
In the early afternoon, the aircraft -capable of conducting reconnaissance, air interdiction and bombing missions- took off from the base in Saint Dizier, east of Paris.
In the morning, according to rebel leader Abdul Jalil Mustafa, troops of the Libyan army attacked Benghazi with tanks and artillery.
However, Tripoli denied the accusations, saying that the soldiers were only responding to rebel fire.
Muammar Gaddafi said that “members of Al Qaeda” attacked their forces stationed in the west of Benghazi, and accused the rebels of using “a helicopter and a fighter plane to bomb the Libyan armed forces in flagrant violation of the zone air exclusion imposed by the Security Council United Nations.”
Indeed, as noted the news agency AFP, rebel forces have a helicopter that was flying over the city today, while there was also enemy artillery fire.
Meanwhile, NATO prepares to intervene in Libya. On this day, representatives of each of its member countries will meet in Paris to decide whether to take more aggressive actions (lobbied by France and the United States) or if it only monitors the safety of civilians.
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