Al-Awlaki is believed by U.S. intelligence and military officials to be behind several terror attempts in the U.S. and thought to be hiding among Yemeni tribes. President Obama placed him on a target list more than a year ago.
Reports from Libya have described some of the rebels in the current war as jihadists and veterans of battles against U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Chad's leader has claimed that al Qaeda militants stole missiles from a Libyan weapons depot. Despite such assertions by al Awlaki and others, U.S. officials have said there has been little indication -- if any -- of significant involvement by jihadists in any of the Arab revolutions.
U.S. Admiral James Stavridis, the NATO Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, said Tuesday that that in Libya there had been only "flickers in the intelligence of potential al Qaeda, Hezbollah [links.]"
"The intelligence that I'm receiving at this point makes me feel that the leadership that I'm seeing are responsible men and women who are struggling against Col. Gadhafi," said Stavridis. "At this point, I don't have detail sufficient to say that there's a significant al Qaeda presence or any other other terrorist presence in and among these folks."
Said Stavridis, "We'll continue to look at that very closely -- it's part of doing due diligence -- as we move forward on any kind of relationship."
ABC News' Lee Ferran contributed to this report.