Forces loyal to Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi have shelled villages and towns in a western mountain range amid calls by the UN for global assistance for the millions displaced by fighting between Gaddafi's forces and rebels trying to oust him.
Panos Moumtzis, the UN humanitarian co-ordinator for Libya, said some 1.6m people in the North African country needed aid because fighting had disrupted basic services and depleted food and medical stocks.
Speaking in Geneva on Wednesday, he said an additional 500,000 who have crossed borders to Tunisia, Egypt and elsewhere in the region also needed humanitarian assistance.
He called for a break in the fighting, so that supplies could reach civilians. He also said he was asking international donors for $408m to fund aid for Libya through September.