Sunday Jul 31, 201101:51 AM GMT
'US dragged Italy into Libya war'
Sun Jul 31, 2011 1:52AM
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NATO airstrikes have pounded Tripoli since the Libya war began in March.
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has said the United States pressured Italy to enter the war against Libya.

"What choice did I have considering America's pressure… President Georgio Napolitano's stance, and the Parliament's decision?" the July 30 edition of the Italian daily Corriere Della Sera quoted Berlusconi as saying.

NATO launched a major air campaign against the forces of the Libyan regime in mid-March under a UN mandate to “protect the Libyan population.”

The United States, France, and Britain say they will not stop their military operation until Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi is removed from power.

The Western coalition airstrikes have claimed the lives of scores of civilians so far.

Libyan revolutionary forces have also frequently criticized NATO for its failure to prevent Gaddafi's troops from killing civilians.

A revolution against Gaddafi began in Libya in mid-February.

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