The Pentagon expects to hand over control of allied military operations in Libya “in a matter of days”, either to a UK-France coalition or to Nato, US Defence Secretary Robert Gates says.
Meanwhile, witnesses in Tripoli reported hearing loud blasts and anti-aircraft fire on Sunday night.
Smoke rose from near the compound of Libyan leader Col Muammar Gaddafi.
The UK said it again launched Tomahawk missiles as part of a co-ordinated strike on Libyan air defences.
Earlier, the Pentagon said Libya’s air defences were effectively degraded.
While the US will continue to play a part in military operations against Col Gaddafi’s forces, Mr Gates says it “will not have the pre-eminent role”.
“I think there is a sensitivity on the part of the Arab League to being seen to be operating under a Nato umbrella,” Mr Gates said. “And so the question is if there is a way we can work out Nato’s command and control machinery without it being a Nato mission and without a Nato flag, and so on.”
Mr Gates also said a break-up of Libya would be a formula for instability. The east of the country, where the month-old revolt began, has historically been much more opposed to Col Gaddafi’s rule, while the west and the area around Tripoli constitute his heartland.