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Friday, March 18, 2011

REUTERS FLASH : Libya Declares Ceasefire

Reuters reported about a half-hour ago that the Libyan government had declared a ceasefire.  However, Reuters also reported that there are no signs of that ceasefire in the rebel-held western city of Misrata,  which was under attack by the Gadhafi regime's forces. Al-Jazeera confirms the attack in its coverage .

For an encapsulation of the respective NATO nations' responses--including Germany's rationale for inaction--and the resources they have availbale, check out DER SPEIGEL's 'West Seeks a Response to Libya's Ceasefire' .

Clearly what the Western Coalition will do depends on when and how blatantly Gadhafi violates the ceasefire, but it would make sense immediately to regard the attack on Misrata as an egregious violation, and attempt to relieve the city by air and by sea. Such action would have the beneficial effect of pinning down the regime's forces in the west.

Likewise, it seems logical that the Coalition would seek asap to neutralize Ajdabya, or at least the roads from there leading east along the coast to Benghazi,  or through the hinterlands to Tobruk ( see the UN Map of Libya ), as well as roads leading west,  which would make it difficult for government forces threatening Benghazi to receive reinforcement or resupply from Sidra.