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NATO to stay in Libya as long as it takes

Xinhua | Updated: 2011-10-11 09:03

BUCHAREST - The North-Atlantic alliance is to remain deployed in Libya as long as there are threats to the local civil population, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said on Monday.

"We are in Libya to protect the civil population from attacks and we are going to keep our operation as long as it takes so that we make sure there are no threats to civilians," Rasmussen told a joint press conference with Romanian Foreign Minister Teodor Baconschi.

However, the NATO Secretary General said NATO's mission in Libya was close to its end, and that the alliance was ready to conclude its operation as soon as the situation on the field requires it.

Rasmussen is in Bucharest for the 57th annual session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly held between October 7 and 10.

He also met during his visit with Romanian President Traian Basescu, president of the Senate Mircea Geoana, speaker of the Chamber of Deputies Roberta Anastase, and Minister of National Defense Gabriel Oprea.

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