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A bulldozer has destroyed the house of Gaddafi inside the Bab al-Aziziya compound [EPA]

Libya Live Blog

Libya - Aug 18, 2011 - 20:01

Last modified: 18 Aug 2011 17:01

Libyan rebel forces celebrated the capture of Sabratha on the coast road between the Tunisian border and the capital Tripoli on Thursday, after a four-day battle with pro-Gaddafi government troops.

Securing the city would tighten the insurgents' control over supply lines to the capital from Tunisia, which they all but severed with the capture of Az Zawiyah closer to Tripoli earlier this week.

A Reuters team in Sabratha, on the coast about 80 km west of Tripoli, said a group of 200 rebels were in the centre of the town firing rifles and anti-aircraft guns into the air in celebration.

Fighters and locals told Reuters the rebels now control 90 percent of the ancient Roman town of Sabratha, and had just pushed forces loyal to Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi out of its Telel district.

They said the battle for the town had been going on for three or four days.

A local man said the breakthrough came when NATO bombed a military training facility in the centre of Sabratha. After that strike, the rebels stormed the facility and seized weapons. - Reuters