Tripoli, Jun 13 (Prensa Latina) Libyan rebels on Monday intensified their offensive against government forces in Az Zawiyah and other regions near the capital after suffering a major setback and casualties in Brega, despite NATO support.
For the third day in a row, rebel militias and army units loyal to Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi fought in the western town of Az Zawiyah, which houses an important oil refinery.
Government troops used heavy artillery to hold back the advance of the rebels, who were backed by NATO air raids over the city and rural areas.
According to Westerm news reports, the rebels are receiving weapons smuggled through Tunisia, especially grenade launchers and assault rifles.
The open NATO support was not enough to subdue pro-Gaddafi forces in the latest clashes, which took place between Ajdabiya and the oil city of Brega.
According to opposition spokespersons, four militia members died and 65 were injured when the army responded to a surprise attack aimed at taking over Brega with the support of NATO warplanes.