Thursday, 21 April 2011

Rebels take Libya-Tunisia border crossing

Qadhafi's troops have abandoned the Dhuheiba border crossing, Source: TAP

Libyan rebels have captured a post on the Tunisian border from pro-Qadhafi forces after three days of intense fighting.

Reports coming out of Tunisia have said that rebels captured the Dhuheiba border crossing, near the town of Wazin, after up to 100 loyalist soldiers fled to Tunisia on Thursday 20th April.

Rebel leader Shaban Abu Sitta said the border post was taken after three days of fighting outside the desert town of Nalut, which is about 140 miles south-west of Tripoli.

He said rebels had seized cars and weapons from the government troops and destroyed 30 trucks.

Nalut was in the hands of anti-government forces last month, but Libyan troops moved in and took it over.

The reports from Dhuheiba have not been independently verified as the government has severely restricted the movement of journalists in western Libya.

An unnamed witness on the Tunisian side of the border, however, told Reuters that government soldiers had surrendered. "We see rebels who control the border crossing," he told Reuters by phone.

TAP, the Tunisian official news agency, reported that 13 Libyan officers, including one major colonel and two commanders, handed themselves over to the Tunisian military at the border, apparently seeking refuge. They have been detained by Tunisian military authorities.

The taking of the Dhuheiba border crossing marks a rare advance for the rebels in the west of the country.

Sources: BBC News, The Independent, TAP, Reuters, MSNBC

For more information, please see the Menas Borders website, here.

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