By Libya Herald reporters.
Tripoli, 15 March 2016:
The British government has denied it is preparing to supply 1,000 troops to help protect . . .[restrict]the Government of National Accord and support an international training mission for the Libyan army.
Speculation that this was on the cards has been around for several weeks. Members of the British parliament’s defence committee visiting Tunis last week said that they had received confirmation locally. They said it was expected that British defence secretary Michael Fallon would agree the deployment with EU colleagues in Brussels this week. Their chairman Crispin Blunt demanded that the House of Commons be told about the plan before any deal was agreed.
However, a government spokesman today denied that there were any such plans. He said that the members of defence committee had been wrong on a number of counts.
“There are no plans to extend airstrikes [from Iraq and Syria] to Libya” said the spokesman, “nor are there plans to send British troops to provide security on the ground in Libya. It is therefore also wrong to suggest the defence secretary will agree any contribution this week”. [/restrict]