UAE F-16 fighter planes in formation
Source: Press TV
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has contributed 12 warplanes to the UN-backed no-fly zone over Libya, despite Arab League's opposition to military action on the North African country.
“We are deeply appreciative of their contribution," a US official said Thursday to AFP.
The Emirate's military support of the no-fly zone comes as Pro-Gaddafi forces have reportedly pushed revolutionaries out of oil port cities of Ras Lanuf and Brega, and re-capture a strategic road junction at Ajdabiya.
Pro-Gaddafi forces, having heavier armor and domination on air power as compared to the poorly armored opposition forces, have also reportedly gained control of Zawiya and Zuwara, west of the capital of Tripoli, and are mounting a strong offensive in Misrata.
International opposition to the US-led invasion continues to grow amid US Defense Secretary Robert Gates saying there is no timeline for the end of the assault on Libya.
The type of aircraft donated by the UAE is not known, although rumors say they are F-16 and Mirage aircraft.
The US-led war draws experts to speculate on the real motive behind the move into the oil-rich country, with analysts believing that Western allies are only after the North African country's vast oil reserves.