France: First shot fired in Libya destroyed vehicle

By REUTERS
March 19, 2011 19:16

 
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PARIS - The first shot in a UN-mandated intervention in Libya was fired by a French aircraft and destroyed a military vehicle at around 1645 GMT, French defense ministry and army officials said on Saturday.

"A first target was engaged and destroyed," ministry spokesman Laurent Teisseire told reporters.

An armed forces spokesman told the same briefing that the operation to halt Muammar Gaddafi's advance on rebel forces involved around 20 planes and an area 100 km by 150 km (60 by 100 miles) around the eastern rebel stronghold of Benghazi.

France's Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier will leave France for Libya on Sunday, the spokesman added. A central command center for the operation was still being set up.

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