Apparent NATO airstrike hits near Gadhafi complex

June 14, 2011 - 7:13 AM
Libya Combat

In this image taken from TV, showing rebel forces on the front line as they repel government troops, Sunday June 12, 2011, in Dafniya, Libya. as fighting continued on Sunday near Libya's main port of Misrata, a western redoubt of the rebels. Video of the battle shows rebels advancing down a road, firing automatic weapons, guns mounted on pick up trucks, rockets and heavy artillery. (AP Photo/APTN) EDS NOTE : NO TRANSLATION AVAILABLE FOR ARABIC SCRIPT ON SIDE OF TRUCK - TV OUT

TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) — A NATO airstrike apparently has targeted the area near Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi's compound in the capital Tripoli.

A column of gray smoke could be seen rising from the area around Gadhafi's Bab al-Aziziya compound before dawn Tuesday. The explosion from the early morning strike could be felt at a hotel where journalists stay in the capital.

It was not clear what was targeted. Libyan officials didn't immediately comment on the strike.

NATO warplanes have repeatedly struck the compound, where pro-government supporters gather each night for rallies in support of the Libyan leader. The latest bombing comes hours after a number of foreign anti-war activists appeared onstage at the compound.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

MISRATA, Libya (AP) — A Libyan rebel commander say Moammar Gadhafi's troops are bombarding opposition forces controlling a key border crossing with Tunisia.

Omar Hussein, a spokesman for rebels in the western Nafusa mountains, says government forces in the al-Ghazaya area on Tuesday were targeting rebels holding the road that leads toward the Dehiba border crossing.

Dehiba is a key supply point for the rebels who wrested control of a string of Nafusa mountain towns from Gadhafi's forces earlier this month.

Hussein says the rebels control the high ground, giving them a strategic edge over Gadhafi's forces in the battle for the Nafusa mountains.

He also says rebels and government troops engage in daily clashes in the mountain towns of Zintan and Reyanna.