Crates containing tank shells litter the desert near Sirte, where Kadhafi was killed
Crates containing tank shells litter the desert close to ammunition storage bunkers located in the desert some 100kms south of Sirte. NATO is weighing a possible new role in Libya following Moamer Kadhafi's death, as France says the UN is poised to vote to end the alliance's mandate for an air war on October 31. © Philippe Desmazes - AFP
Crates containing tank shells litter the desert near Sirte, where Kadhafi was killed
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Simon Martelli, AFP
Last updated: October 28, 2011

NATO weighs new role in post-Kadhafi Libya

NATO allies on Friday formally agreed to end the seven-month mission in Libya on Monday, a diplomat told AFP.

NATO ambassadors meeting in Brussels agreed "by unanimity to end OUP (Operation Unified Protector) on October 31," the diplomat said on condition of anonymity.

NATO made a preliminary decision last week to end operations on Monday after judging that civilians were essentially safe from attacks following Kadhafi's death and the fall of Sirte.

The formal decision Friday came one day after the UN Security Council unanimously voted to end the mandate that authorised military action in Libya from 11:59 pm Libyan time (2159 GMT) on October 31.

Alliance warplanes flew more than 26,000 sorties and bombed almost 6,000 targets in an operation that began in March and helped a ragtag rebel force oust veteran ruler Moamer Kadhafi.

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