The United States says that after today it will withdraw its combat aircraft from missions over Libya, although it will continue to provide midair refueling and fly surveillance missions. The rebels are being driven back from some of their positions, and have called for a ceasefire, whose terms would include the withdrawal of the regime’s forces from cities in eastern parts of the country. Col. Gheddafi laughed at them and refused their offer.
Meanwhile, the Syrian government continues its crackdown on protesters, and has made more mass arrests. In Oman, police fired on protesters in the port of Sohar, killing at least one person.
In other news, emergency workers at the Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan failed in their attempt to close a 20-cm crack in the basement of one of the stricken reactors. Radioactive water is leaking through the crack directly into the sea.
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