Some aid reaching Misrata, but needs still high

News and Press Release
Originally published

NAIROBI, 10 May 2011 (IRIN) - More aid has arrived in the western Libyan city of Misrata, with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) delivering medical supplies, spare parts to repair water and electrical supply systems and baby food by ship.

Civilians evacuated from Misrata, which is has seen fierce fighting between government and opposition forces, between had described [ ] the humanitarian situation there as grim, saying families were barely able to find enough food and water, medical treatment was hard to access, and corpses were lying in the streets. Misrata is a strategic city between Tripoli and Col Muammar Gaddafi's home town of Sirte.

The delivery came as the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Valerie Amos told [ ] the Security Council that shelling and fighting had been ongoing in parts of Misrata for more than two months and some people were running short of food, water and other basics. Humanitarian assistance has so far been ad hoc.

"All parties need to agree a temporary pause in the conflict in Misrata and other areas," Amos added. "This would provide respite from violence for the civilian population, and enable those who wish to leave to do so. An independent assessment of the humanitarian situation could be conducted and a pause would also enable delivery of essential medical supplies and other relief items, and the evacuation of third country nationals, the wounded, and others who require emergency medical assistance."

Reports say rocket fragments in the city indicate the use - by both sides - of Soviet-designed Grad rockets. Cluster munitions, which are banned by more than 108 countries, have also reportedly been used.