Diplomatic and Military Affairs

Russia says Libya advisers outside UN mandate

Updated: 2011-04-21 20:53


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LJUBLJANA - Russia said on Thursday that Western countries sending military advisers to Libya were going beyond a UN Security Council mandate and dragging the world into a ground war.

"We are not happy about the latest events in Libya, which are pulling the international community into a conflict on the ground. This may have unpredictable consequences," Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in Slovenia.

"We can remember how instructors were first sent to some other countries, and later soldiers were sent there and hundreds of people died on both sides," Lavrov told a news conference.

Britain said on Tuesday it would send military officers to advise Libyan rebels.  France, the other main leader of the Western coalition conducting air strikes, has decided to send up to 10 military advisers.

Veto-wielding permanent UN Security Council member Russia abstained from the vote on the Western-initiated resolution authorising military intervention in Libya, but has repeatedly criticised the extend of the coalition operation that ensued.

Moscow has also warned against outside interference in Arab nations caught up in a wave of unrest.

In Ljubljana, Lavrov said anti-government protesters in Yemen shoud start a dialogue with the government in order to reach an agreement on the future and not rely on help from abroad.



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