Published: Feb 25, 2011 6:39 PM EST
Updated: Feb 25, 2011 3:41 PM EST

WASHINGTON- The United States is moving closer to imposing new sanctions on Moammar Gadhafi's regime after hundreds of Americans were evacuated from Libya.

Officials say the Obama administration could impose travel bans, freeze assets and take other steps against Gadhafi loyalists Friday. They said the announcement's timing depends on the safety of Americans and other foreigners remaining in Libya. Protests against Gadhafi's 42-year rule have become an armed insurrection, and the U.S. is urging Americans to leave if they can.

President Barack Obama was briefing world leaders on U.S. plans and coordinating international pressure on Gadhafi's government to stop violence against opponents. International officials say thousands may be dead.

The U.S. ferried some 150 Americans out of Tripoli Friday. Washington is also chartering a plane for more evacuations.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)