NEW YORK–(ENEWSPF)–September 20, 2011. NATO is committed to continuing its mission in Libya for as long as threats against civilians endure, but is determined to end the operation as soon as conditions allow, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said on 20 September on the margins of the meeting of the “Friends of Libya”, which he attended in New York.
“The days of the former regime are clearly numbered”, the Secretary General said. “The recent positive developments in Libya are irreversible”.
The Secretary General welcomed the adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 2009, which establishes a UN mission in Libya. Resolutions 1970 and 1973, which mandated international action to protect civilians in Libya, remain in place, as threats against the civilian population persist.
Mr Rasmussen stressed the effectiveness of Operation Unified Protector, which NATO Allies and partners launched in response to the United Nations mandate. “Our operation has been a success. Allies and partners alike have made a difference by mounting a complex operation in very little time, carrying out our mandate to the letter, and with the highest degree of military professionalism to avoid harm to the Libyan people and their infrastructure”, he said.
The Friends of Libya meeting took place on the sidelines of the meeting of the UN General Assembly. It brought together international heads of state and government and representatives of key international and regional organizations, including from the African Union, European Union and United Nations to discuss ways to aid Libya’s transition to a functioning democracy.