US-led assault nears goals in Libya, European allies likely to take over command

March 22nd, 2011 - 1:25 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, Mar 22(ANI): The US-led military campaign to destroy Libyan dictator Muammar al-Gaddafi’s air defenses and establish a no-fly zone over the country has nearly accomplished its initial objectives, American officials have said.

However, the attacks have not forced Gaddafi to withdraw his forces from embattled cities and cease all attacks against civilians.

At the Pentagon, officials said that the intensive assault over the weekend was a classic air campaign, which was intended to have coalition aircraft in the skies above Libya within days and without fear of being shot down.

“You don’t do that piecemeal. You do it all at once, and you do it as fast as you can,” the New York Times quoted a US military official, as saying.

The official said that the targets included radar installations, fixed and mobile antiaircraft sites, Libyan aircraft and hangars, and other targets intended to make it safe for allied aircraft to impose the no-fly zone.

They also included Gadaffi’s forces’ tanks and other ground forces engaged with the rebels around the country.

Communications centers and at least one Scud missile site were also struck, the official said.

Another official said that the US is moving swiftly to hand command to allies in Europe. (ANI)

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