This post is being constantly updated
All times are in Libyan local time GMT +2
01:13 United Nations Security Council passes resolution for a no-fly zone over Libya. Ten nations voted for the motion, 5 abstained and there were no votes against. Congratulations Libya!
22:48 Reuters Italian defense minister Ignazio La Russa said “We would not shirk our duties, even though our line has always been one of balance and moderation.” Italy is a potential base for any military action against Libya, and they said they would not stand in the way if the UN imposed a no-fly zone. Read here
22:36 The Guardian Britain, France and the US, along with several Arab countries, are to join forces to throw a protective ring around the Libyan rebel stronghold of Benghazi as soon as a UN security council vote on military action is authorised, according to security council sources.
A source at UN headquarters in New York said military forces could be deployed soon after a new security council resolution calling for states to protect civilians by halting attacks by Muammar Gaddafi’s forces by air, land and sea.
22:28 Al Jazeera Arabic An eyewitness has just confirmed the city of Zintan is being bombarded by Gaddafi’s forces right now. The bombardment began after Gaddafi’s speech on radio.
22:24 BBC has just announced that diplomatic sources tell them that 5 countries are expected to abstain from voting including Russia and China
20:15 Al Jazeera Arabic The USA has given the Transitional National Council of Libya assurances that the UN resolution to impose a no-fly zone will pass and that suitable measures to protect the civilians will be made available
19:54 Reuters Any foreign attack on Libya will endanger air and maritime traffic in the Mediterranean basin and expose the area to both short and long term risks, the Defence Ministry said in a statement broadcast on Libyan television.
The statement said Libya would strike back at civilian and foreign targets if the country comes under attack from foreign forces.
“Any foreign military act against Libya will expose all air and maritime traffic in the Mediterranean Sea to danger and civilian and military (facilities) will become targets of Libya’s counter-attack,” said the statement.
“The Mediterranean basin will face danger not just in the short-term, but also in the long-term,” it said.
19:25 Footage showing the fighter jet that was shot down by revolutionaries in Bu Hadi today
Letter from the French President to the Heads of State and Government of the members of the Security Council
“It is high time for the international community, through the Security Council, to pull together in order to draw the logical conclusions from this situation and respond without delay to the urgent appeal of the League of Arab States. For this purpose, Lebanon has circulated a draft resolution.”
“France solemnly calls on all the members of the Security Council to fully shoulder their responsibilities and give support to this initiative.”
19:11 Al Jazeera Arabic A plane carrying tens of tons of humanitarian and medical aid is on its way from Qatar to Libya today.
18:37 Reuters Egypt said on Thursday it would not be involved in any military intervention in its neighbour Libya after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said discussions were under way about possible Arab involvement. “Egypt will not be among those Arab states. We will not be involved in any military intervention. No intervention period,” Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Menha Bakhoum told Reuters. Read article here
18:31 BBC Analyst from Oxford tells the BBC that it will cost america $300 million dollars a week to enforce a no-fly zone in Libya
18:31 BBC Arab League envoy to the UN have confirmed that 2 Arab countries are prepared to participate in enforcing a no-fly zone over Libya
18:13 Reuters US Mission to UN Security Council says vote on Libya resolution will likely be at 0330 EDT (1930 GMT)
18:03 Al Jazeera Arabic Benghazi is saying to Saif and Gaddafi: We are too cool
17:53 Al Jazeera English Consultations on the draft UN Security Council resolution in New York have just begun.
17:33 Al Jazeera English Scott Heidler in New York reports that the United Nations Security Council is still discussing developments in Afghanistan, with deputy ambassadors present. The formal, closed-door consultations on Libya have not yet begun
17:00 Politiken.dk An overwhelming majority of the Danish Parliament is prepared to send the Danish Air Force to Libya to enforce a no-fly zone, even if the United Nations is unable to agree on intervention.
“The United Nations Security Council has been asleep. And in the meantime only one thing has happened – Gaddafi has built up increasing momentum against the pro-democratic forces,” says Liberal Foreign Policy Spokesman Michael Astrup Jensen.
16:53 Unconfirmed There are unconfirmed reports that some high ranking Officers in Gaddafi’s forces which are attempting to leave Libya from the eastern border with Tunisia before the potential passing of the UN no-fly zone resolution today. This has been sourced from Misratah’s free press movement.
16:26 Footage of damage caused to a mosque in Misratah today
16:16 Abdul Hafeeth Ghoga spokesman for the Transitional Council has just made the following points which we have translated and bring to you in summarised form:
- Massacres in Misratah after city cut off all communications. Strikes on the city from land air and sea
- Zwara and Western Mountains as well
- Also Benghazi today, 4 strikes in Benina and Bu Atni, they attempted to destroy airport. This is Gaddafi’s response to the people’s revolution
- Regarding the int. community, we think that they will agree even on strategic bombardments against Gaddafi’s forces.
- All the people of Libya have done is demonstrate for their basic rights
- We have heard that they have agreed the text for the no-fly zone and are in the process of discussing what is beyond a no-fly zone.
- We are against land troops totally. But if there is support under the umbrella of UN, then we agree with that.
- Things in Ajdabiya are currently swinging in favour of the revolution. Gaddafi is doing nothing more than bombarding mercilessly and without distinction.
- Saif can speak as much as he wants. As far as REAL progress, then that is non-existant on the ground. He knows that a no-fly zone is coming nearer and nearer, so they’re trying to kill as much as they can before it is implemented.
16:07 Al Jazeera Arabic is reporting that Gaddafi’s fighter jets are bombarding for the third time Benina airbase which has defected and in the control of the revolutionaries. They are attempting to destroy the airbase to prevent defected fighter jets from taking off. There are also reports that barracks belonging to the defected 36th battalion.
15:53 Iyad El-Baghdadi reports that Benghazi itself is said to be calm. The military council has requested no videos of the front lines are put up, to prevent revealing tactical information. He further adds that Gaddafi’s regime is using more psychological warfare by calling and texting Benghazi residents. Lastly he reports some demonstrations by the Warfalla and Tarhuna tribes, denying claims that they support Gaddafi.
15:35 Al Manara reports via twitter that its witnesses have said there were very dark clouds over Benghazi this morning, forcing the jets to fly low. They also added that 1 jet was shot down earlier this morning in addition to the 2 jets mentioned earlier.
15:08 Demonstrations yesterday in Benghazi.
14:26 @BaghdadBrian tweets: Being confirmed benghazi, libya 2 or 3 planes shot down and 2 planes defected to opposition it is still singlesource on our end.
@Elleebi adds: Confirmation from within Benghazi of TWO Gadaffi fighter jets shot down
@ShababLibya: Citizens of Benghazi reported jet fighters, hearing anti air aircraft gun fire, explosion and now plumes of smoke // We are also hearing from the ground 2 jets may have defected // Another call to Benghazi confirming the 2 jets had been shot down
@AlmanaraMedia Two Gaddafi War Jets have been Shot down in Benghazi after they bombed Banina Air Base.
We’re hoping to get more confirmation soon.
13:56We posted this video earlier, and we post it again with the promised translation. A contributor kindly emailed the translation to us, so thank the contributor very much.
In the name of God most Gracious most merciful
A call to the Libyan army. I would like to remind you that this revolution has no other goals, except the demand of the removal of Qaddafi. This comes after 41 years of gagging mouths. After 41 years of confiscating freedoms, after 41 years of repression, degradation and humiliation. After 41 years of Qaddafi promoting himself to the rank of God to be worshipped. Your people have revolted other to express their opinions about this murderer. So why do you face your people with bullets. Is this your civil duty ? To defend one person? I swear by God it is a shame (disgrace) and sad to see you killing your brothers while holding pictures of this lunatic and cheering the chants that are lies, awkward and silly. We don’t see the brave and free revolutionists (freedom fighters) hold up pictures of anyone nor cheer for the life of anyone. Their only chant is Libya Libya. The choice is yours to either to stand with your people, or with the tyrant. No third option. I will remind you of the verse from the Holy Quran “Indeed Pharoah, Haman and their soldiers were wrongdoers”. I swear justice will prevail in this life before the hereafter if you don’t stop. I swear each person who lost a dear one by your hands will demand rightful justice now before later. This regime has ended. This regime has worn out, and will not rise again. So don’t kill representing them, rather come join your people before it is too late.
9:39 This video reportedly shows the hospital in Ajdabiya yesterday. Warning, this video contains graphic images.
9:15 Al Jazeera Medical sources in Misurata said that at least 80 members of Gaddafi’s forces were killed during yesterday’s fighting.
08:05 It is phenomenal and truly inspiring how the demonstrations and revolutions have spread from country to country. For those who are interested, we’d like to point you to the Facebook page of the Armenian revolution, here. Today there will be another big rally, and we’d like to give our heartfelt support to the Armenian people.
7:40 Al Jazeera reports that in Benghazi, opposition protesters are buoyed by news that fighters in a nearby town have beaten back an offensive by Gaddafi’s forces. While some in the city are apprehensive that the war may still come to their door step, they remain defiant, vowing to fight on to defeat Gaddafi’s troops.
Almanara Media 05:29 Video from the front lines of battle in the city of Misratah 16th March. Translation below video
Cameraman: Cover our backs guys, from here. Stay here for a while. God is Greater, God is Greater
On the 16th March 2011, the security battalions of Gaddafi moved towards Misratah and tried to control it but were not able to enter the striving city of Misratah. They failed terribly and the youth were able to stop them on the main costal highway, the coastal highway, and here is the flag of independence on its way to stop them at point on the coastal highway. At this time, with the point ahead of me here, it seems that we have full control over the battalion that is present on the left side of the road, and we have it under complete control all Praise be God. God is greater, God is greater, God is greater, God is greater and to God is all thanks! God is greater! God is greater! God is greater…
Guy off shot: They’ve caught one. There there, his car is still here he’s in it and it’s known if he’s dead or what..
Another guy off shot: Ah, the afro guy who owns the chevrolet…
Guy off shot: Did you record it? Did you record him?
Cameraman: I swear I wasn’t able to record him, even the guys said don’t record him. These (recordings) we’re going to prepare and send to Al Jazeera. Even the telephone lines have been cut by these dogs. More than once someone calls, the moment he picks up, they say “hello” then close the line.
Shouting: take it easy, take it easy!
Guys with AK47: Camera? It’s alright you can record me, it’s all cool! God is Greater!
Cameraman: God is greater! God is greater! God is greater! At last you have become modern Abu Sha’alah! God is greater! Where’ve you been? Where’ve you been? (laughing) God is greater! God is greater!
Guy shouting: Don’t go near anything boys! Yo!
Cameraman: Guys! The place might be booby-trapped or something, be careful! Don’t move anything!
Cameraman: And now the revolutionaries want to attempt to sweep the coastal highway. This spot is located………this direction board illustrates the place we’re in at the moment. From this spot, the capital Tripoli is 240km away.
Guy with ammo belt round neck: We’re coming for you Mu’ammar, we’re coming for you, we’re coming for you Mu’ammar. By the will of God (we’ll reach) Baab Al Aziziyah, we’re coming for you!
Guy runs into screen: It’s coming for you Mu’ammar! It’s coming it’s coming!
Guy off shot: God is greater!
Guy at a distance: Hey hey hey! Stop recording stop recording! Stop recording hey!
Cameraman: God is greater God is greater God is greater
[unclear..something about the camera]
Guy walking towards camera: No no leave it…[unclear]
Cameraman: God is greater God is greater God is greater
Cameraman: God is greater God is greater …
Cameraman: Date is 16th March….God is greater…in the area of Karzaaz. The battalion is positioned on the coast highway. I bear witness that there is no god except God and that Muhammed is the messenger of God. Abdul[…], keep low
Friend: Did you see that [unclear] by the Will of God it is ours. Did you see that car that came in or not?
Partner: God willing it is them
Cameraman: You should’ve seen the anti-aircraft bullet that shot past us
Friend: slowly slowly
Cameraman: Just wait a moment
04:45 Asharq Alawsat Interview with Major General Abdul-Fattah Younis who has very optimistic views regarding the military situation on the ground and how things will develop. Read the article here
04:33 @SherrieGG has uploaded this fantastic caricature. Please click the image for a larger view
04:14 The New York Times: WASHINGTON — The prospect of a deadly siege of the rebel stronghold in Benghazi, Libya, has produced a striking shift in tone from the Obama administration, which is now pushing for the United Nations to authorize aerial bombing of Libyan tanks and heavy artillery to try to halt the advance of forces loyal to Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi. Read the article here
03:41 The Copenhagen Post Lene Espersen, the foreign minister, told parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee on Tuesday that the Air Force is preparing four F-16 fighter jets to take part in an internationally-backed no-fly zone over Libya, should Nato high command decide to act.
The government is trying to build support in parliament and internationally for a United Nations-backed no-fly zone over Libya to block Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi from making further advances against rebel forces and attacking Libyan civilians.
03:02 CBSNews have a copy of the draft UN resolution document which has been the focus of today’s discussions regarding the no-fly zone over Libya. Read the document here
02:49 Al Jazeera English live blog is reporting from AFP that the UN Security Council have reached an agreement on the text of a draft resolution on Libya, which will be put to a vote on Thursday, diplomats said.
02:35 Libya’s Deputy Permanent UN Representative states that 400 vehicles are headed to destroy Ajdabiya right now. The convoy has been instructed to spare nothing and no one.