Rebel fighters in Libya on Sunday said that they took control of a town just south of the capital, Tripoli, according to media reports.
Pro-Moammar Gadhafi forces claimed that they were able to retake the town of Bir al-Ghanam, located around 50 miles south of the capital, but this was denied by the rebels, reported Reuters.
The town is the closest the rebels have ever been to Tripoli, where Gadhafi resides.
"Gadhafi is a liar because Bir al-Ghanam is under our control," Col. Juma Ibrahim, a rebel commander, told the news agency. "We are still in the same position we were yesterday."
Ibrahim said that the troops are advancing slowly, going “one by one,” because pro-Gadhafi forces placed landmines on the roads into the town, reported The Associated Press.“Now he [Gadhafi] can only defend himself against us,” he added.
The attack can be viewed as an attempt to break the deadlock between the rebels and Gadhafi forces that have been battling for five months.