BEIJING - China has warned Britain over plans to send military officers to advise Libyan rebels struggling against the forces of Muammar Gaddafi, saying that Beijing opposes any steps that go beyond the mandate of a United Nations resolution.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei stopped short of directly accusing Britain of violating the U.N. Security Council resolution on the Libyan conflict, but he left no doubt that China is unhappy about Prime Minister David Cameron's decision to send about a dozen officers to Libya to help insurgents improve their fighting capabilities.
"China believes that the United Nations Security Council has primary responsibility for protecting international peace and security, and the various sides should strictly abide by the Security Council mandate in handling matters," Hong said on the Foreign Ministry's website late on Friday, in answer to a question about the British decision.
"China disapproves of taking any actions that exceed the mandate of the Security Council," said Hong.
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