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Anti-Gadhafi forces take heavy losses

[ 2011-09-29 10:48]     字号 [] [] []  
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Anti-Gadhafi forces took heavy losses as they pushed on Wednesday toward the ousted despot's compound in his birthplace Sirte, while also being beaten back in his other remaining bastion, Bani Walid.

On the political front, a member of Libya's new ruling National Transitional Council (NTC) said formation of a transitional government, already delayed by disputes over power-sharing, had been postponed until they had won control of the entire country.

In a radio message, Muammar Gadhafi hailed the resistance put up in Bani Walid, where the NTC said four of their fighters were killed and 11 wounded in fierce clashes on Tuesday with forces loyal to the toppled leader.

The losses were heavier in Sirte, where NTC fighters are battling their way to the heart of the sprawling Mediterranean city, site of a Gadhafi compound and bunkers.

Fighting which raged into the night on Tuesday centered around the Mahari hotel in eastern Sirte where NTC combatants engaged loyalist troops in close quarter skirmishes, a commander said.

"More than 10 of our fighters have been killed today in face-to-face fighting near Mahari hotel," said the commander, who asked not to be named as the information was sensitive.

The NTC fighters and Gadhafi's diehards clashed "in street fights and shot at each other from close range with Kalashnikovs and rocket-propelled grenades", the commander said.

The NTC fighters had early on Tuesday captured Sirte's port, marking a key victory in the battle for control of Gadhafi's hometown.

But they expected a ferocious fight for control of the compound, the nerve center of the remaining resistance where some of Gadhafi's family are thought to be holed up.

(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Anti-Gadhafi forces take heavy losses

About the broadcaster:

Anti-Gadhafi forces take heavy losses

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.