SANTIAGO, Chile — President Barack Obama says Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi "has to go," but he says that's not the goal of the international military effort against Libyan government forces.
The United States has fired close to 150 cruise missiles against
Libyan targets in the past three days, including one that hit
inside the compound in Tripoli where Gadhafi and his family live.
Speaking at a news conference during a visit to Chile, Obama
said the strikes are carrying out the U.N. mandate to establish a
no-fly zone over Libya and protect civilians from massacre by
forces loyal to Gadhafi. Obama says Gadhafi has been "carrying out
murders of civilians" and has "threatened more."
The president says he's had no second thoughts about beginning
the air offensive while he was traveling outside the United States.
But he says the U.S. will transfer leadership of the operation to
other, unnamed participants within a "matter of days."