(Reuters) - Fighting in Libya's besieged rebel city of Misrata killed at least 10 civilians including an Oscar-nominated British filmmaker, and NATO urged non-combatants to avoid troops so it could step up air strikes.
Among the dead were British photojournalist Tim Hetherington, co-director of Oscar-nominated war documentary "Restrepo," and American photographer Chris Hondros, killed when a group they were in came under mortar fire.
Seven Libyan civilians and a Ukrainian doctor were also killed during fierce fighting in Libya's third largest city, medics said.
France promised the insurgents on Wednesday it would intensify air strikes on Libyan government forces and dispatch military liaison officers, echoing a move by Britain, to help organize poorly trained insurgents.
Rebels said they were battling for control of a major road in Misrata, a port of 300,000 people and the insurgents' last bastion in the west of the country, where civil war ignited in February over demands for an end to Gaddafi's 41-year rule.