Britain to Send Advisers to Libya Amid Rebel Disarray

Critics in UK already warning of 'mission creep'
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 19, 2011 8:00 PM CDT
A Libyan rebel fighter waits for deployment orders along the western gate of Ajdabiya.   (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser)
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(Newser) – With anti-Ghadafi rebels still bickering over who's actually their leader, Britain plans to dispatch a team of miitary advisers to Benghazi to help them get their act together. London insists the advisers won't arm or train rebels or go beyond the UN mandate, reports al-Jazeera. Their biggest order of business may simply be figuring out which of two rival commanding officers to deal with, notes the New York Times.

The British decision immediately drew criticism at home, reports the Guardian. "However much one despises the brutality of the Gaddafi clan which rules Libya, the fact remains that there is a danger of mission creep," said a Labour MP. "There is a civil war in Libya and this is a big escalation of Britain's involvement." On that note, the Libyan government denounced the move as well as a proposal to send in EU troops to guard aid deliveries, reports the Washington Post. It vowed to fight any foreign troops on its soil.

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