Following is a statement by NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen:
After 42 years, Colonel Qaddafi's rule of fear has finally come to an end. Libya can draw a line under a long dark chapter in its history and turn over a new page. Now the people of Libya can truly decide their own future.
I call on all Libyans to put aside their differences and work together to build a brighter future.
I urge the National Transitional Council to prevent any reprisals against civilians and to show restraint in dealing with defeated pro-Qadhafi forces.
NATO and our partners have successfully implemented the historic mandate of the United Nations to protect the people of Libya. We will terminate our mission in coordination with the United Nations and the National Transitional Council. With the reported fall of Bani Walid and Sirte, that moment has now moved much closer.