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Libya: Probe On Air Strike

  • April 8th, 2011
  • Posted by EUEditor

military-aircraftorg1.jpegThe NATO alliance has responded to reports of an air strike causing casualties on the opposition side in Libya, as it sets out its operational plans.

A communiqué from the headquarters in Italy says it is “looking into the specific details of an alleged strike on a column of tanks destroyed outside of Brega today”, it said on 7.4.11.

“The fighting between Brega and Ajdabiyah, where the strike occurred, has been fierce for several days”, it says.

“The situation is unclear and fluid with mechanized weapons traveling in all directions.

“What remains clear is that NATO will continue to uphold the UN mandate and strike forces that can potentially cause harm to the civilian population of Libya.”

The following is an earlier statement from the alliance, on 7.4.11.

On March 27, NATO decided to take control over all military operations for Libya under United Nations Security Council Resolutions 1970 & 1973. The aim of Operation UNIFIED PROTECTOR is to protect civilians and civilian-populated areas under attack or threat of attack.

The mission consists of three elements: an arms embargo, a no-fly-zone and actions to protect civilians from attack or the threat of attack.

  • Over the past 24 hours, NATO has conducted the following activities associated with Operation UNIFIED PROTECTOR:

Air Operations

Since the beginning of the NATO operation (31 March 2011, 08.00GMT) a total of 1170 sorties and 473 strike sorties* have been conducted.

Sorties conducted 6 April: 164

Strike sorties conducted 6 April: 73

*Strike sorties are intended to identify and engage appropriate targets, but do not necessarily deploy munitions each time.

  • Arms Embargo Activities

A total of 19 ships under NATO command are actively patrolling the Central Mediterranean. 20 Vessels were hailed on 6 April to determine destination and cargo. No boardings were conducted.

A total of 113 vessels have been hailed and 5 boardings has been conducted since the beginning of arms embargo operations.

  • Traffic Control Humanitarian Assistance

Total of Humanitarian Movements : 25 (air, ground, maritime)

Ships delivering Humanitarian Assistance 6 April: 2

Aircraft delivering Humanitarian Assistance 6 April: 1

Command and Control

NATO’s operational commander for Operation Unified Protector is Lieutenant-General Charles Bouchard of the Canadian Air Force. His office and staff is located at the Joint Force Command in Naples.


North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), Brussels, “NATO Newsletter”, “Operational Media Update, NATO and Libya – 6 April 00.01 – 23.59”, 7.4.11.

NATO, Brussels, (media release), “NATO looking into tanks destroyed outside of Brega”, 7.4.11.