Sorman: NATO insisted an air strike west of Tripoli hit a military target and not civilians as claimed by Muammar Gaddafi’s regime, while a British air force chief warned Tuesday of Libya overstretch.
NATO, reversing an initial denial, acknowledged its warplanes early on Monday carried out strikes in the Sorman area, 70 kilometres (45 miles) from Tripoli, but said its warplanes bombed a “high-level” command and control node.
Libyan government spokesman Mussa Ibrahim said 15 people, including three children, were killed in the attack, which he slammed as a “cowardly terrorist act which cannot be justified.”
Ibrahim said the attack was on an estate of a veteran comrade of Kadhafi, Khuwildi Hemidi, who served on the Revolution Command Council Kadhafi created when the strongman seized power in 1969.
Journalists escorted there by authorities saw damaged buildings on the sprawling estate.
Reporters were also taken to Sabratha hospital some 10 kilometres from Sorman, where a correspondent saw nine bodies, including two children. They also saw body parts including a child’s head.
Canadian Lieutenant General Charles Bouchard, commander of NATO operations in Libya, insisted the military was targeted.