Libyan Rebels Hold City of Zawiya after 6-Hour Battle

In a long night of fighting, Libyan rebels armed with tanks, machine guns, and anti-aircraft guns have managed to hold on to Zawiya, the city they seized on Sunday that happens to be nearest to Tripoli.

Residents passed out sweets and cold drinks to fighters today and celebrated with a victory march after they managed to repel a six-hour attack by pro-Gadhafi forces, the AP reports. "We will not give up Zawiya at any price," one fighter said. "They will fight to get it, but we will not give up. We managed to defeat them because our spirits are high and their spirits are zero."

Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi’s forces struck back at his opponents on three fronts on Monday, with special forces, regular army troops and, rebels said, fighter jets, in an escalation of hostilities that brought Libya a step closer to civil war.

Repositioned US forces could be used to enforce a no-fly zone to prevent Col Gaddafi's aircraft attacking opposition supporters, BBC correspondents say.

"We have planners working various contingency plans, and I think it's safe to say as part of that we're repositioning forces to provide for that flexibility once decisions are made," Pentagon spokesman Col Dave Lapan said.