Opposition fighters in Libya's west battled for control of a small town that sits astride a road to both Tripoli and the coast over the weekend. Despite back-and-forth fighting that saw regime troops bombard newly gained rebel positions with Grad rockets, rebels reportedly held the town by Monday morning.
From Bir al-Ghanam, rebels can push north to the coastal town of Serman, cutting off a supply route between the Tunisian border and the capital, or they can go straight to Tripoli, around 80km away.
Troops loyal to Muammar Gaddafi are likely to put up a stiffer fight as rebels get closer to the capital, but the opposition says residents of Serman are waiting for their arrival and ready to rise up.
Al Jazeera's Zeina Khodr reports from near Bir al-Ghanam.