Last Update 21:11
Monday, 11 November 2019

Syria no-fly zone not on NATO's agenda: US envoy

We are not pushing for a no-fly zone at NATO in Syria, outgoing US ambassador to NATO says

Reuters , Monday 17 Jun 2013
Views: 729
Views: 729

The United States is not asking NATO to back a no-fly zone in Syria and the issue is not currently on the alliance's agenda, the outgoing US ambassador to NATO said on Monday.

The purpose of such a move would be to prevent Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from using air power against rebel forces, thereby addressing a critical imbalance in the civil war. But it would be costly to enforce, and could mean entering the conflict by destroying Syria's Russian-built air defences.

"We are not pushing for a no-fly zone at NATO," Ambassador Ivo Daalder said in response to a question after his farewell speech in Brussels.

As of today, he said: "the issue of a no-fly zone is not on the table at NATO. Whether it will (be) tomorrow or some other day, I don't know, but it isn't there yet. It isn't, as far as I know, on the table of any NATO member, including, so far the United States."

US President Barack Obama's administration said last week it would arm Syrian rebels, having obtained proof the Syrian government used chemical weapons against fighters trying to overthrow Assad.

Western diplomats said last Friday Washington was considering a limited no-fly zone over parts of Syria. But the White House noted later that it would be far harder and costlier to set one up there than it was during the conflict in Libya which led to the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

It said the United States had no national interest in pursuing that option.

Daalder said the United Nations would have the main responsibility for dealing with the humanitarian consequences if the Assad government collapsed, but he said NATO might agree to help by bringing in equipment by air if the United Nations asked it to do so.

Short link:


Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.

© 2010 Ahram Online.