No central Libyan air strike command: France

20th March 2011, Comments 0 comments

Coalition members conducting air strikes on Libyan targets are coordinating their actions but there is no central command organising the attacks, a source in the French defence ministry said Sunday.

"There is no centralised headquarters and at this stage everyone is using their own headquarters in a coordinated manner," the source said.

The French are operating out of Mont Verdun, near Lyon in the east of the country, where the air force has its chief air defence control centre.

The British headquarters are at Northwood, in the suburbs of London, and those of the United States at Ramstein in southwest Germany.

The American HQ has the "greater planning capacity," the source said.

He added that there were "exchanges of staff between the three HQs," in particular between Mont Verdun and Ramstein, and a "definition of command structures as the deployment takes place."

The source declined to comment on whether France would take the military leadership of the operation.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy will discuss the situation in Libya on Sunday evening with Prime Minister Francois Fillon, Foreign Minister Alain Juppe, Defence Minister Gerard Longuet and Edouard Guillaud, commander-in-chief of the armed forces, the Elysee Palace told AFP.

No statement was to follow the meeting.

© 2011 AFP

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