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US jet crashes in Libya, pilots safe

[ 2011-03-23 10:53]     字号 [] [] []  
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Muammar Gadhafi's forces attacked two west Libyan towns on Tuesday after coalition forces bombarded Libya for a third straight night, and NATO tried to resolve a heated row over who should lead the Western air campaign.

Meanwhile, China called on Tuesday for an immediate ceasefire in Libya.

All parties must "immediately cease fire and resolve issues through peaceful means," Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said at a regular news conference, citing reports that the air strikes had caused civilian deaths.

"The UN resolution on a no-fly zone aimed to protect civilians. We oppose abuse of force causing more civilian casualties and more serious humanitarian disasters," Jiang said.

Western nations have still to decide who will take over command once Washington pulls back.

The United States will cede control in days, US President Barack Obama said, even as divisions in Europe fuelled speculation that Washington would be forced to retain leadership of air patrols that will replace the initial bombardment.

"We anticipate this transition to take place in a matter of days and not in a matter of weeks," Obama, facing questions at home about the US military getting bogged down after long campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, told a news conference on a visit to Chile.

In the first apparent air force casualty of the campaign, a US F-15E crashed in Libya overnight Monday and its two crew members were rescued, the US military said.

The plane came down in field of winter wheat and thistles outside the town of Bu Mariem, about 38 km east of the rebel capital of Benghazi. The crash was probably caused by mechanical failure and not hostile fire, the military said.

In the latest fighting on Tuesday, Gadhafi's tanks shelled the rebel-held western city of Misrata. Residents said the death toll for Monday had reached 40.


1. What type of plane crashed?

2. Where did it come down?

3. What was the death toll in Misrata?


1. US F-15E.

2. Bu Mariem, about 38 km east of the rebel capital of Benghazi.

3. 40.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

US jet crashes in Libya, pilots safe

About the broadcaster:

US jet crashes in Libya, pilots safe

Lee Hannon is Chief Editor at China Daily with 15-years experience in print and broadcast journalism. Born in England, Lee has traveled extensively around the world as a journalist including four years as a senior editor in Los Angeles. He now lives in Beijing and is happy to move to China and join the China Daily team.