Fighter jet shot down over rebel stronghold of Benghazi, Libya
- Chaos erupts in the opposition center of Benghazi
- Libya invites international observers to visit the country to observe the cease fire
- Doctor in Misrata: “What cease fire? … There are deaths”
- A U.N. Security Council resolution permits the use of force to protect civilians
Tripoli, Libya (CNN) — The civil war in Libya took a significant turn Saturday when a fighter jet fell from the sky and burst into flames as explosions rang out in the rebel stronghold of Benghazi.
A day earlier, the government said it was abiding by a cease-fire and no-fly zone, but witnesses have said violence from forces loyal to ruler Moammar Gadhafi has continued.
It was not immediately clear whom the jet belonged to, but the development indicates pro-Gadhafi forces may have moved in on the city considered an opposition stronghold.
The opposition has been pushed back from other cities, but has vowed to defend Benghazi to the death.
Violence has raged in Libya following protests demanding an end to Gadhafi’s almost 42-year-long rule. Protests have been met by widespread reports of violence by Gadhafi forces. Rebel fighters — including members of the military who defected — have fought back.
The fighter jet incident came hours before international leaders meet in Paris to discuss the next steps in dealing with Libya.
The U.N. Security Council voted Thursday to authorize “states to take all necessary measures to protect civilians.” It also imposed a no-fly zone, banning all flights in Libyan airspace — except those that involve humanitarian aid and the evacuation of foreign nationals.
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