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Gaddafi 'will be judged on actions'

Military action to enforce the UN resolution in Libya will continue while there is no evidence of a ceasefire by Colonel Muammar Gaddafi's forces, the Ministry of Defence has said.

Major General John Lorimer, strategic communications officer to the Chief of the Defence Staff, said the Libyan dictator remains in breach of Security Council resolution 1973.

He said: "Although the Libyan authorities again claimed a ceasefire, there has been no evidence to suggest there has been any change in the stance of the Libyan military.

"As the Prime Minister has said, we will continue to judge Colonel Gaddafi on his actions, and our assessment is that he is in breach of these obligations so we will continue to enforce the resolution."

At a press briefing at the MoD, Maj Gen Lorimer said the allies' attacks had been "highly effective", and he denied that the firing of British Tomahawk missiles had resulted in civilian casualties.

He said the missiles, launched from Trafalgar class submarines in the Mediterranean, had hit their intended targets in the Libyan military's command and control system.

"These were launched and successfully attacked the intended targets," he said. "Despite Libyan reports and claims to the contrary, we are not aware of any civilian casualties."

Air Vice Marshal Phil Osborn said Tornado GR4 ground attack aircraft - which have been carrying out attacks from RAF Marham in Norfolk - would now be moving to Gioia del Colle in southern Italy where the Typhoon fighters are already stationed.

He said they would be equipped with Paveway IV laser-guided bombs and Brimstone guided missiles, as well as the Storm Shadow missiles they have already been using.

They will also have available Raptor infra-red sensors to enable them to help monitor the situation on the ground along with the Sentry, Sentinel, and Nimrod R1 surveillance aircraft operating from RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus.


From Belfast Telegraph