British jets strike Gaddafi hometown bunker

By Phil Scullion

British Tornado jets fired upon a large bunker in Colonel Gaddafi's hometown of Sirte, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has said.

The jets took off on Thursday night from RAF Marham on a long-range strike mission, armed with precision guided missiles.

This comes amidst a build up of rebel forces in the area as pressure grows on the compromised Libyan leader's final strongholds.

However the defence secretary Liam Fox told the BBC: "It's not a question of finding Gaddafi, it's ensuring the regime does not have the capability to continue waging war against its own people."
The whereabouts of the beleaguered leader is still unclear, despite the rebel's success in taking the capital Tripoli earlier in the week.

"The attack that we launched on the bunker in Sirte last night was to make sure that there was no alternative command and control should the regime try to leave Tripoli," Dr Fox added.

Rebels have moved their administrative base from their stronghold of Benghazi to Tripoli, although Dr Fox warned the "confused" situation in the capital could go on some time.

As fighting goes on the UN issued a call for restraint against revenge attacks from all sides.

Reports over previous days suggest suggest such attacks have been carried out by troops from both sides of the conflict.

The UN also agreed yesterday to release £1 billion of Libyan assets to help avoid the growing humanitarian crisis, as fears grow that food and water supplies could run out.

The assets had been frozen under sanctions against the previous regime in Libya.

Shadow foreign secretary Douglas Alexander described the move as the "the first step in a longer journey".