To clinch

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Senior Member
Good morning,

I am not entirely sure of the sentence I heard on the BBC this morning, but It definitely included the verb clinch in a discussion over Libya.
Could somebody confirm its use and meaning here?

The recent bombing of pro-government forces will certainly clinch the passage of the United Nations Council in Tripoli.

As usual, many thanks.
Wish you a nice week.
  • e2efour

    Senior Member
    UK English
    The first forum two dictionary definitions give you an answer to your question. Replace clinch with settle or secure.
    We often say "to clinch a deal" and your sentence is not far from this.
    But something appears to be missing, e.g. to clinch the passage of a resolution by the UN. Also in Tripoli seems to be in the wrong place.


    American English
    A can clinch B, meaning to make it inevitable or certain that B will come about. The term is often used in sports journalism to describe some act that put a victory by the team that was behind practically out of reach: "In the 88th minute, a second goal by Nashorn clinched the victory for Germany," if, say, that made the score 3-1 instead of only 2-1; if France had been behind by only one goal, they might have tied in the last two minutes, but a two-goal deficit but victory out of reach.

    I agree that there are several problems with the overall sentence.
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