Clinton Welcomes NATO’s Decision to Enforce No-Fly Zone
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton welcomed NATO's decision to enforce the no-fly zone over Libya, although it will not take total control of the military operations against Libyan leader Muammar al-Qaddafi.
Secretary Clinton said Thursday that NATO is "well-suited to coordinating this international effort."
"We have agreed to transition command and control of the no-fly zone over Libya to NATO," Clinton said.
Secretary Clinton also said that the United Arab Emirates will contribute warplanes to enforce the no-fly zone. The White House released a statement thanking the UAE for its support.
"This critical participation by the UAE further underscores the broad, international support for the protection of the Libyan people," said the White House in a statement.
NATO agreed late Thursday to enforce the no-fly zone over Libya after days of hard bargaining among its members.
The agreement, announced in Brussels by the alliance's secretary-general, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, will allow the U.S. to hand over command and control of part of the international operation, as it has been eager to do. But it appeared that some NATO members balked at supervising attacks on targets on the ground.
"At this moment there will still be a coalition operation and a NATO operation," Rasmussen said. "But we are considering whether NATO should take on the broader responsibility in accordance with the U.N. Security Council resolution, but that decision has not been reached yet."
Rasmussen said the NATO operation would be in concert with the coalition's bombing campaign.
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