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Libyan rebels advance in west front, suffer casualties in east

(Xinhua)

09:33, August 18, 2011

BENGHAZI, Libya, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) -- Libyan rebels have captured Sabratha, a town about 80 km west of the capital Tripoli, in the west front, a rebel spokesman said Wednesday.

On the eastern front near Brega, Libyan rebels have controlled two of the three residential districts in the oil town and were fighting with the Gaddafi forces for the industrial area, Colonel Ahmed Omar Bani, a military spokesman based in the rebel stronghold of Benghazi, said at a press conference.

On Tuesday alone, 26 rebel soldiers died and more than 40 injured in battles in Brega, mostly killed by snipers, the rebel- controlled Libya TV said.

Bani also said what Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's spokesman claimed about the complete control of Brega and Zawiyah were "pure lies."

Libyan rebels entered Zawiyah, about 40 km west of Tripoli, after fierce battles with Gaddafi's forces on Saturday and "now Zawiyah is under full control of our revolutionary forces," said Bani.

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