Washington: US President Barack Obama has said he was "proud" of the international military operation in Libya, saying after the death of Muammar Gaddafi: "we did exactly what we said we were going to do."

Obama said on Thursday that the NATO-led effort in support of Libyan rebels, which also involved several Arab states, showed the "enormous capacity" of multilateral action, and said the operation had helped Libyans to write their own destiny.

"We did exactly what we said we were going to do in Libya," Obama said, as he met Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg in the Oval Office.

"It underscores the capacity of us to work together as an international community. The United States obviously has unique capacities, and we were proud of the leadership we showed in that process."

"I'm very proud of the work that we did on this operation."

After ordering an initial assault that took out Libya's air defences, Obama ceded the prime role in the Libya operation to NATO allies Britain and France, though US forces maintained crucial logistical support.

Some of his Republican foes accused him of operating a "leading from behind" approach and being indecisive about the use of force and American military assets.

But the White House argued that burden-sharing with Europeans had been proven to be successful.

"I think what this shows is that on a whole range of international issues there is enormous capacity and we are able to leverage greater resources, more effectiveness, at lower cost, when we are able to work together," Obama said.

"I am very proud of the work that we did this operation. Most importantly I am proud of what the Libyan people achieved.

"We have now given them the opportunity to determine their own destiny."