Wednesday, June 5, 2013

US, NATO allies to consider Libya military training mission

BRUSSELS — U.S. officials will discuss this week with NATO allies the possibility of establishing a military training mission for Libya’s fledgling security forces, defense officials said Monday, as Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel arrived in Brussels for a meeting of defense chiefs.

Libya has struggled to build its military and police forces since rebels aided by a NATO air-bombing campaign overthrew the country’s longtime ruler, Moammar Gaddafi, in the summer of 2011. Deteriorating security after the country’s civil war has become a big concern for Washington, most significantly since the Sept. 11, 2012, attack on U.S. installations in Benghazi, which resulted in the death of the U.S. ambassador to the country and three of his colleagues.

A senior defense official said Monday that the Libyan government has approached the United States and other countries that participated in the 2011 air campaign asking for help.