3 Oct 2011

Beseiged city needs medical aid - Red Cross

5:34 am on 3 October 2011

The International Red Cross says people in the besieged Libyan city of Sirte are in desperate need of medical aid.

National Transition Council forces say they are observing a two-day truce to allow civilians to leave, but a Red Cross team there reports heavy fighting.

Residents leaving the city say said the situation has deteriorated to such an extent that there is little food and no water or electricity.

The ICRC says nearly 10,000 people have now left Sirte. At least a third are setting up camp in desert areas not far from the city.

An ICRC team was given security clearance from both sides to cross checkpoints and visit the Ibn Sima hospital on Saturday.

Afterwards, it said the hospital had a huge influx of patients, medical supplies are running out and there is a desperate need for oxygen

However, the team could not visit wounded people on the wards as the hospital came under fire.

Sirte is one of two major cities still holding out against the NTC.

The whereabouts of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi remain unknown.