NATO's top official says the military alliance and its partners have decided to extend the mission in Libya another 90 days.
Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said Wednesday, "This decision sends a clear message to the Gadhafi regime: We are determined to continue our operation to protect the people of Libya."
The military alliance took over command of the operation on March 31 after difficult negotiations among its members. Unanimity of 28 is required for action, and the operations to enforce a no-fly zone and use air power to protect civilians was authorized for an initial 90 days.
That time would have expired in late June. Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi is trying to withstand the NATO air barrage and put down a rebellion among his own people.