As NATO continues to search for a drifting sea mine in the Misurata port, humanitarian ships are anchored offshore awaiting access to the port to deliver needed supplies and to evacuate migrant workers and wounded patients to Benghazi. IOM appealed to NATO and the Libyan authorities to allow its evacuation ship, the Red Star One, to dock in Misurata. The ship is anticipated to dock tomorrow morning, with the standby mechanism to utilize fishing boats to evacuate migrant workers to the IOM ship if unable to access the port.
Recently, as boats have accessed the port, shelling is said to have generally intensified. Today, however, following intense NATO strikes of Gaddafi force targets around the city, shelling of the port is said to have largely stopped.
With ongoing fighting in Misurata, wounded civilian and combatant patients continue to require urgent medical care. Yesterday, the hospital received 22 wounded (three in a critical situation) and five dead.
In the Western Mountain region Yefren and Qalaa districts are reported to be suffering shortages of humanitarian supplies due to siege conditions imposed by Gaddafi forces. Heavy fighting is also reported nearby Yefren. Zintan was reportedly hit by 60 rockets yesterday, with heavy shelling continuing today. As a result of the conflict, many residents of Zintan and nearby Jadu are reported to have fled to Tunisia. Unconfirmed reports indicate that Gaddafi troops are advancing from the Sinawin area, south of Nalut, towards the Dehibat-Wazin border which is still under rebel control.
In Benghazi, a car blast today occurred in the commercial zone of the city, without causing any major damage and with few minor injuries