The UN Security Council on Thursday approved a resolution ending NATO’s military activities in Libya. The 15-member council unanimously adopted the measure, under which authorization for NATO’s seven-month military intervention in the North African nation will lapse at the end of the day in Libya on Oct. 31, according to a Security Council release. This includes the end to NATO’s no-fly zone over Libya. Back in March, the Security Council allowed NATO to take “all necessary measures” to prevent then-Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi’s forces from targeting Libyan civilians during the country’s civil war. NATO put in place the NFZ and carried out air strikes against Qaddafi forces during the succeeding months until Qaddafi’s death on Oct. 20 and the declaration three days later by Libya’s National Transitional Council that the country was liberated. The Security Council went ahead with Thursday’s vote despite Wednesday’s NTC request that NATO maintain its presence until the end of the year, reported Voice of America. NATO already was preparing to end the Libya mission on Oct 31. (See also New York Times report via the Seattle Times.)
While the Air Force is keeping a seemingly optimistic outlook about the future of its MH-139 Grey Wolf fleet, despite problems receiving FAA certification, another of the service’s helicopter programs is being prematurely curtailed—and officials are already considering what might come next.