French sending advisers to Libya

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The Independent Online

France's government says it will send a small number of military liaison officers to Libya to work with opposition forces, but no ground troops.

Britain is sending up to 20 military advisers to help Libya's rebel force break a stalemate with Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's forces.

French government spokesman Francois Baroin said today that France will send "a very small number" of liaison officers to help the Libyan rebels and apply the UN resolution on protecting civilians.

He insisted: "We do not envisage deploying combat ground troops."

French Defence Minister Gerard Longuet says the UN Security Council should consider whether to send ground troops.

Libyan opposition leader Mustafa Abdul-Jalil is meeting French President Nicolas Sarkozy in Paris today.