Gadhafi's Men Halt Rebels' Advance on Sirte
Rebels are shelled, advance on Sirte halted
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 29, 2011 7:54 AM CDT
A civilian car leaves the frontline outside Bin Jawaad, 150km east of Sirte, central Libya, Tuesday, March 29, 2011.   (AP Photo/Anja Niedringhaus)
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(Newser) – Moammar Gadhafi's forces today halted the Libyan rebels' advance on Gadhafi's hometown of Sirte, driving them back a few dozen miles east of the city with the help of tanks and rockets. The rebels' panicked retreat suggests that, even with the help of airstrikes from the US and its allies, the opposition is no match for Gadhafi's organized forces and superior weapons without extensive outside help, the AP reports.

Hillary Clinton will meet today with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and other world leaders to discuss increasing the pressure on Gadhafi. The US is also planning to send a diplomat to meet with rebel leaders, says a senior administration official. Meanwhile, Russia and other countries are increasingly criticizing the NATO air campaign, claiming it is going beyond the UN resolution that authorized it. Click for the latest on Libya.