News / Middle East

White House: All Options Considered on Libya, Yemen

White House spokesman Jay Carney
White House spokesman Jay Carney

A day before President Obama is expected to speak publicly about the situation in Libya, his spokesman says the United States and its international partners continue to keep all options on the table to deal with the situation.

With Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi defying calls to step down, and his forces increasing attacks on opposition fighters, the U.S. and its partners are under increasing pressure to establish a no-fly zone over Libya.

The importance of this issue was highlighted after reports that Libyan government aircraft carried out strikes on one town between Brega, an oil refining center, and the second largest city, Benghazi, which is controlled by insurgents.

President Obama's spokesman, Jay Carney, repeated what he has been telling reporters through the week, that a no-fly zone is among options being "actively considered."

He had this response when pressed Wednesday about remarks by Defense Secretary Robert Gates in testimony on Capitol Hill that establishing a no-fly zone would be a "big operation" and would require military strikes against Libyan air defenses.

"Other options remain on the table, "said Carney. "The fact that the no-fly zone idea is complex does not mean it is not on the table, so there is not a contradiction between what Secretary Clinton said and what Secretary Gates said."

Asked whether the White House has gotten resistance from Secretary Gates or military leaders on the option of a no-fly zone, Carney replied "not at all." He added that the administration as of mid-Wednesday had no announcements about options that may or may not be taken.

On other issues, the White House issued a statement on Wednesday detailing a phone call from Yemen's President Ali Abdullah Saleh in which the Yemeni leader apologized for any "misunderstanding" caused by comments he made earlier.

In remarks at Sana'a University Tuesday, President Saleh said the U.S. and Israel were responsible for the wave of protests in the region, and he directly accused President Obama of meddling in the affairs of Arab countries.

In a phone call with President Obama's counter-terrorism adviser John Brennan, President Saleh said, according to the White House, that he is "firmly committed to meaningful political reform in Yemen, and is reaching out to opposition elements in an effort to achieve reform through a democratic, inclusive and peaceful process."

Brennan, according to the statement, said any comments seeking to "attribute blame for recent developments in the region are unhelpful as they ignore the legitimate aspirations of people in the Arab world.

At the White House news briefing, Press Secretary Jay Carney also was asked about the level of concern about Yemen, and about a statement by Yemeni cleric Abdul Majid al-Zindani, who called for creation of an Islamic state in Yemen.

By and large, Carney said, demonstrations by Yemenis, as with those in other countries in the region, are broad-based and focused on democratic reforms.

"That one man has called for the kind of change that he is calling for is not necessarily reflective of the change that Yemenis more broadly are demanding," he said.

President Obama is expected to make remarks about Libya, and likely on the situations in other countries in the region, on Thursday, as he meets with visiting Mexican President Felipe Calderon.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid