Libyans force Chadian retreat

The northern oasis town of Faya-Largeau has been recaptured by Libyan-led forces, Western military sources said here. The capture of the town, 500 miles north of N'Djamena, the Chadian capital, came Wednesday afternoon after five days of intensive bombing by Libyan aircraft , they said.

The sources said some of President Hissein Habre's men and military equipment , including US-supplied Redeye missiles, were evacuated from the town before the assault. The retreating government troops were apparently moving southward to form new defense lines, possibly around government-held Oum-Chalouba, a small town 150 miles southeast of Faya-Largeau, the sources said. The Chad Embassy in Paris said the Libyan aircraft were bombing Oum-Chalouba, the scene of heavy fighting.

French and US officials confirmed that Faya-Largeau had fallen to the rebels. Chadian Information Minister Soumaila Mahmaet said all supply lines to the sprawling oasis had been cut, isolating the troops.

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