By Hadi Fornaji.
Tripoli, 27 July 2015:
The British government is playing down reports that Prime Minister David Cameron said he was prepared . . .[restrict]to use air power against Daesh targets in Libya.
As he arrived last night in Indonesia at the start of a five-day South-East Asian tour, Cameron told a UK newspaper that he would order “immediate” air strikes if he felt that British lives were in danger.
However, within hours the British foreign office was soft pedalling the idea of instant air action. Specifically, it ruled out any retaliation against Daesh for the terror attack in Tunisia in which 30 British holidaymakers were gunned down at a Sousse beach resort hotel.
The message from London is now that the prime minister wants UK ministries, including that of Defence, to put together plans to support a credible Libyan national unity government, if one can be put together. The main focus is on border security and help with training police.
The Foreign office said:” Supporting progress towards a UN-mediated ceasefire and a stable political settlement in Libya is our immediate priority. The UK has no plans to launch air strikes over Libya”.
It added that it was “working closely with international and regional partners to support the Libyans to tackle terror groups and are discussing how to use existing UN security council resolutions to sanction terrorist groups in Libya including groups affiliated to Isis”.