The British Royal Navy maintains the pressure on the military forces of Kadhafi in Libya 2307113
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Defense News - United Kingdom
|The British Royal Navy maintains the pressure on the military forces of Kadhafi in Libya.|
Three days and nights of fire and steel saw Royal Navy sailors and aircrew heavily in action as a succession of blows was delivered to the Gaddafi regime. British Royal Navy HMS Iron Duke lit the way for Allied jets to take out regime rocket positions near Zlitan, while her high explosive shells silenced a gun battery outside the besieged city of Misrata, Libya.
British Royal Navy HMS Iron Duke Type 23 frigate
Guided by Fleet Air Arm airborne surveillance Sea Kings, Apache gunships from HMS Ocean struck at Gaddafi forces to the west of Misrata at Al Khums and knocked out vehicle sheds during a series of concerted attacks as part of Operation Unified Protector.
Iron Duke has temporarily relieved HMS Liverpool, which is taking a break after three months on patrol off Libya.
The Portsmouth-based frigate was returning from a five-month stint in the Gulf when she was diverted to the Unified Protector mission – and found herself in the line of fire almost immediately.
On Monday night Iron Duke’s 4.5in Kryten gun fired star shells over Zlitan which lit up the desert and made it possible for NATO aircraft to accurately target regime positions, including two rocket launchers.
The pressure was maintained on government troops the following night when Ocean sent her Army Air Corps Apaches against regime forces oppressing the people of the small port of Al Khums, with Bagger Sea Kings providing radar cover.
The gunships eliminated a vehicle check point and half a dozen buildings which previous NATO surveillance missions had identified as military targets. Hellfire missiles fired by the helicopters wiped them out.
Monday, 18 July, 2011, night Iron Duke’s 4.5in Kryten gun fired star shells over Zlitan, Libya.
Twenty miles to the east, star shells from Iron Duke again illuminated the terrain around Zlitan as NATO forces carried out surveillance missions.
The third day of action was focused at Zlitan. RAF jets attacked more than two dozen buildings following lengthy intelligence gathering, smashing command and control centres, ammunition and fuel dumps, as well as five multiple rocket launchers and some heavy infantry weapons.
While the air force was eliminating those targets, Iron Duke replaced star shells with high explosive and silenced a government artillery battery. The frigate observed the guns firing into Misrata and promptly responded.
When darkness fell last night, Ocean’s Apaches were once again dispatched to Al Khums and destroyed two large sheds used to store military vehicles.