Libya says NATO airstrike kills 15 west of capital

June 20, 2011 - 8:41 AM
Mideast Libya

In this photo taken on a government-organized tour, members of the media and others examine the remains of a damaged residential building in Tripoli, Libya Sunday, June 19, 2011. The Libyan government accused NATO of bombing a residential neighborhood in the capital and killing civilians early Sunday, adding to its charges that the alliance is striking nonmilitary targets. (AP Photo/Adam Schreck)

SURMAN, Libya (AP) — Libya's government says a NATO airstrike on a large family compound belonging to a close associate of Moammar Gadhafi has killed 15 people west of Tripoli.

A NATO official in Naples, Italy, says the alliance has not conducted any strikes in that area in the past 24 hours. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because of NATO regulations.

Libyan government spokesman Moussa Ibrahim says the alliance bombed Khoweildi al-Hamidi's farming compound near the city of Surman, some 40 miles (60 kilometers) west of the capital, early Monday morning.

Ibrahim told foreign journalists bused to the site that al-Hamidi escaped unharmed but that three children were among those killed, two of them al-Hamidi's grandchildren.

Ibrahim accused NATO of targeting civilians for "intimidation" purposes.