WFP: Humanitarian corridor opened in west Libya

UN food agency says convoy of 8 trucks with 240 tons of food, which can feed about 50,000 people for 30 days, crosses into Libya from Tunisia.

By REUTERS
April 19, 2011 13:23
1 minute read.
Victory sign in Libya

Libya peace victory sign 311 (R). (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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GENEVA - The United Nations food agency said on Tuesday it had started moving food supplies through a new humanitarian corridor into western Libya for civilians in cities including Tripoli.

A convoy of eight trucks loaded with 240 metric tons of wheat flour and high-energy biscuits, enough to feed nearly 50,000 people for 30 days, crossed into Libya from Tunisia on Monday, the World Food Program (WFP) said in a statement.

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"We managed to open a new humanitarian corridor into western Libya," WFP spokeswoman Emilia Casella told a news briefing.

"WFP is coordinating with all parties to ensure that affected needy civilian population do not go hungry, irrespective of their area's adherence to any of the warring factions," the statement said.

The food will be distributed mainly to women and children in Tripoli, Zintan, Yefrin, Nalut, Mezda, Al Reiba and Al Zawia via the Libyan Red Crescent, it said.

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NATO warplanes launched air strikes on the Libyan capital Tripoli and the city of Sirte to the east on Tuesday, state-run television reported.

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A NATO statement said multiple air strikes on Monday night targeted communications infrastructure and the headquarters of Muammar Gaddafi's 32nd brigade 10 km (six miles) south of Tripoli.

"NATO will continue its campaign to degrade the Gaddafi regime forces that are involved in the ongoing attacks on civilians," the commander of the NATO operation, Lieutenant-General Charles Bouchard, said in the statement.

In response, forces loyal to Gaddafi renewed bombardment of Misrata and casualties were seen being taken to hospital, an Amnesty International researcher in the western Libyan city said.

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