Libyan tanks strike Sirte loyalists

SIRTE - Tanks manned by fighters forLibya's interim government shelled loyalists holding out inMuammar Gaddafi's hometown on Monday as NATO jets circledoverhead, ready to renew air strikes on the besieged coastalcity of Sirte.

While anti-Gaddafi forces which have advanced from the westheld their ground, firing from two tanks positioned about 2 km(2,000 yards) from the center of the sprawling desert town, asharp push forward on the eastern front by scores of armedpick-up trucks raised spirits among the attackers.

Sirte, where NATO aircraft hit targets on Sunday, liesbetween Tripoli and the eastern city of Benghazi, both now heldby the National Transitional Council (NTC), whose rebel fightersoverran the capital five weeks ago after six months of fighting.

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