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19 Mar 2011 19:59
The first shot in a UN-mandated intervention in Libya was fired by a French aircraft and destroyed a military vehicle at about 4.45pm, French defence ministry and army officials said on Saturday.
“A first target was engaged and destroyed,” ministry spokesperson Laurent Teisseire told reporters.
An armed forces spokesperson told the same briefing that the operation to halt Muammar Gaddafi’s advance on rebel forces involved around 20 planes and an area 100km by 150km around the eastern rebel stronghold of Benghazi.
France’s Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier will leave France for Libya on Sunday, the spokesperson added. A central command centre for the operation was still being set up.
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