Gathafi forces say on outskirts of Benghazi
TRIPOLI - Libyan television said Thursday that forces loyal to strongman Moamer Gathafi were on the outskirts of the rebel stronghold of Benghazi.
"The town of Zuwaytinah is under control (of loyalists) and armed forces are on the outskirts of Benghazi," Allibya television said.
Zuwaytinah is about 150 kilometres (93 miles) south of Benghazi, the Mediterranean city and seat of the opposition trying to unseat Gathafi.
On Tuesday, Libyan state television said the army would soon move against Benghazi, and on Wednesday, Gathafi's son Seif al-Islam predicted that everything would be over in 48 hours.
Gathafi himself said on Wednesday that his forces would fight a "decisive battle" as they pressed rebels in the west and threatened Benghazi.
Earlier Thursday, Allibya said Gathafi's forces had wrested control of Misrata, the country's third city, 200 kilometres (125 miles) east of the capital Tripoli, and were "purging" it of insurgents.
There was no way to independently confirm either of these reports, though the rebels later said Misrata was still in their hands.