Though it was believed that the Gadhafi forces had abandoned their direct assault on the city of Misrata, that appears to have been premature. In a surprise attack the forces once again attacked from a different angle, following a march through the desert.
The latest attack saw regime forces heavily shelling Misrata’s port and a number of rockets were also fired against the city in an offensive which continued into the night. The strikes temporarily halted foreign aid into the city.
Misrata is the last major rebel-held city in West Libya, and has been under near constant attack for weeks. It is also the home of a UN humanitarian aid effort which the regime agreed to.
The situation in Misrata is one of the last sticking points for what many believe will be a stalemate in the ongoing civil war. Outside of Misrata, the two factions control mostly contiguous parts of the country, setting the stage for a partition.