WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. role in the international campaign against the Libyan government is being scaled back some more.
Two U.S. defense officials say the Pentagon will soon stop firing Tomahawk cruise missiles against Libya.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates and the head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff had already told Congress that U.S. combat aircraft will be pulled out of the mission as of Sunday.
Officials say that after the U.S. stand-down takes effect, the ships and subs armed with Tomahawks will stay in the region, ready to resume firing, if it’s requested by NATO and approved by the Pentagon.
The U.S. military will continue providing a range of support, including aerial refueling and aerial surveillance and reconnaissance.
NATO aircraft will perform the combat role as well as patrol a no-fly zone.
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Image provided by the US Navy shows the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Barry (DDG 52) as it launches a Tomahawk missile in support of Operation Odyssey Dawn from the Mediterranean Sea, with LIBYA map on texture, lettering AIR STRIKES, finished graphic
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.