NATO strikes, NTC kill 151 in Sirte: Gaddafi aide

NATO strikes, NTC kill 151 in Sirte: Gaddafi aide

TUNIS - Ousted Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi’s spokesman told Reuters on Thursday that NATO air strikes and shelling of Sirte by interim government forces on Wednesday and Thursday killed 151 people.



By (Reuters)

Published: Thu 22 Sep 2011, 7:23 PM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 1:54 AM

He also said the city’s main hospital had run out of medical supplies and power.

His claims could not immediately be verified as Sirte, Gaddafi’s hometown, is largely cut off from communication and is besieged on three fronts by ruling National Transitional Council (NTC) forces.

NATO comment was not immediately available.

‘Between yesterday and this morning, 151 civilians were killed inside their homes as the Grad rockets and other explosives fell upon their heads,’ Moussa Ibrahim said in a satellite phone call to Reuters in Tunis.

‘The city hospital stopped functioning altogether last night. Patients died simply because nothing can be done to help them.’

Ibrahim made similar claims last week when he said that NATO raids on Sirte had hit a residential building and a hotel, killing 354 people.

A spokesman at the time said NATO was aware of the allegations and such claims were often unfounded.

‘ROCKETS AND BOMBS’

Sirte is one of only two major towns still under the control of pro-Gaddafi forces after the NTC took over most of another stronghold, Sabha, on Wednesday.

Ibrahim called on the United Nations, the European Union, the Arab League, foreign media and rights groups to try to get into the centre of Sirte.

‘We hold them directly responsible to expose the crimes committed against a whole city with the vigour and energy they had when they believed they were helping the cities of Misrata and Zawiyah from Libyan armed forces,’ he said, referring to a devastating Gaddafi bombardment of those cities during the war.

NATO says its air strikes in Libya since March have not killed large numbers of civilians.

Ibrahim also attacked the raising of Libya’s new flag at the United Nations on Tuesday.

‘Look at Palestine — more than 60 years legitimate struggle for a state and still nobody wants to hear the case of the Palestinian people to have a seat at the UN’ Ibrahim said.

‘Yet some armed gangs, supported by NATO, get their flag raised at the UN before they’re in even in control of the whole country. The Libyan people didn’t vote for that flag. It’s all through violence and rockets and bombs.’


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