Guardian.co.uk | Nearly 12 hours of allied air strikes have broken the Libyan regime's five-day bloody assault on the key rebel-held town of Misrata.
Residents said the aerial bombardment destroyed tanks and artillery and sent many of Muammar Gaddafi's forces fleeing from Misrata, ending a siege and attack by the regime that cost nearly 100 lives from random shelling, snipers and bitter street fighting.
Mohammed Ali, an IT engineer at Misrata's main hospital, said that waves of air strikes began shortly after midnight on Wednesday.
"They bombed a lot of sites of the Gaddafi army. There is a former hospital where his tanks were based. All the tanks and the hospital were destroyed. A column of tanks was destroyed on the edge of the city," he said. "After that there was no shelling. We are very relieved. We are very grateful. We want to thank the world. The Gaddafi forces are scattered around. All that is left is the snipers and our fighters can take care of them."