WASHINGTON, Sept. 5 (UPI) -- U.S. State Department officials praised Libya for blocking al-Qaida operations in North Africa and slowing recruitment of militants to fight in Iraq.
"They've been good team members and partners on that," said Dell Dailey, a State Department counter-terrorism coordinator.
Libya has helped the U.S. military monitor the flow of al-Qaida operatives moving from North Africa to Syria -- a key route for al-Qaida volunteers training to fight U.S. coalition forces in Iraq, Dailey told Med Basin News Line in an article published Friday.
Dailey briefed reporters Wednesday ahead of U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's visit to Libya -- the first by a U.S. secretary of state since 1953.
Libya was removed from the State Department's list of terrorist sponsors in 2006 and since has proved to be a valuable security ally, Dailey said.