President Barack Obama
U.S. President Barack Obama makes remarks about the situation in Libya in the East Room at the White House in Washington, March 18, 2011. REUTERS

President Barack Obama on Friday threatened the use of military force against Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, but said any action would not involve U.S. troops on the ground.

Friday's statements come after the U.N. Security Council on Thursday voted to allow military action against Gaddafi's forces to protect Libyan civilians.

Obama said Gaddafi had to stop his troops from advancing on the eastern city of Beghazi and pull them back from several others, while establishing utilities to all the country and allowing the entry of humanitarian assistance.

These terms are not subject to negotiation. If Gaddafi does not comply with the resolution, the international community will impose consequences, and the resolution will be enforced through military action, he said.

Obama emphasized that the U.S. was prepared to act as part of an international coalition.

He said the U.S. would provide the unique capabilities that we can bring to bear .. including enabling our European allies and Arab partners to effectively enforce a no fly zone.

He also emphasized what the U.S. would not be doing.

The United States is not going to deploy ground troops into Libya. And we are not going to use force to go beyond a well-defined goal -- specifically, the protection of civilians in Libya, he said.

He noted that Britain, France and the members of the Arab League have already committed to take a leadership role in the enforcement of the U.N. resolution.