March 30, 2011 / 9:08 AM / 8 years ago

Gaddafi forces move east, bombard rebels with rockets

UQAYLA, Libya, March 30 (Reuters) - Rebels said their forces were pulling out of the oil town of Ras Lanuf on Wednesday after forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi advanced further east and bombarded rebel positions with rockets.

Two rebel fighters said rebels had pulled out, while a third said fighting was still going on around the area of the town.

“Gaddafi hit us with huge rockets. He has entered Ras Lanuf,” rebel fighter Faraj Muftah told Reuters after pulling out of Ras Lanuf. “We were at the western gate in Ras Lanuf and we were bombarded,” said a second fighter, Hisham.

A Reuters witness saw scores of rebel 4x4 pick-ups heading east, away from Ras Lanuf.

A third fighter in the area, who did not give his name, said: “This is a back and forth battle”. He added that clashes continued around Ras Lanuf.

Rebel fighters, mostly armed with light weapons and riding on 4x4 pick-ups, say they have been overwhelmed by the superior firepower and range of Gaddafi’s weaponry. (Reporting by Alexander Dziadosz; Writing by Edmund Blair in Cairo)

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