Rebels retaliated by firing back with rockets as a fireball exploded from one of the oil tanks and the sky above the Es Sider terminal, in the east of the country, filled with hideous smoke.
A witness said one of the smoke plumes was the biggest he had seen in the conflict so far.
The fresh onslaught came as Gaddafi deployed tanks and snipers to ‘shoot anything that moves’.
Forces loyal to the Libyan dictator poured into the city of Zawiyah in a desperate bid to oust the hardcore band of protesters and army defectors who have taken control.
Witnesses said dead bodies were lying in the ruins of many buildings destroyed in air raids earlier in the week and there was no one in the streets of the centre of the city of 290,000.
‘We can see the tanks. The tanks are everywhere,’ one rebel fighter said by telephone.
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