In a briefing on April 20, Toner said Obama has yet to authorize the
State Department proposal, Middle East Newsline reported. He said the surplus military equipment allocated
to the rebels would include non-encrypted radios, body armor, uniforms,
boots, tents, combat rations and medicine.
"I'm not sure that would require any or much training," Toner said.
The recommendation came after an administration assessment of the
composition and requirements of the Libyan rebels. Earlier, officials
acknowledged that the Libyan rebels were linked to Al Qaida-aligned
"We are getting a better sense of their command structure, of their
coherence as an entity, and that's helping us make better decisions about
how we can help them," Toner said.
Officials said the administration has briefed Congress of the proposal
to equip the Libyan rebels. In the April 15 briefing, the administration had
recommended combat vehicles and refueling vehicles, which did not appear in
the final State Department draft. Officials said the proposed vehicles could
have been converted into offensive platforms.
"There is a leadership there that we believe can properly utilize this
equipment," Toner said.