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March 07, 2011
LONDON --- Britain is blaming a misunderstanding for a bungled mission to contact Libya's opposition that ended with eight people detained and the U.K. ambassador's humbling apology broadcast on Libyan state television.
Foreign Secretary William Hague - who authorized the operation - told lawmakers the diplomatic team and their military escorts had been briefly held by rebel forces after they were seized last week.
"They were withdrawn yesterday after a serious misunderstanding about their role leading to their temporary detention," Hague told legisl
From the start, the UK govt had been highly critical and vocal about the massacre in Libya, amongst many other nations that had largely kept silent at that time, even the Arab League.
No matter what transpared, the UK govt at least had made the attempt to contact the rebellion, mainly civilians turned armed freedom fighters against the butcher of Libya, to understand what is needed by the then yet to be fully organised united rebellion organisation of Libya.
They had not gone in with an army, but only with one diplomat and comprehensibly, with the best protection that UK can afford - the SAS, sane gentlemen whom yields not to pressure or irrational excitment that may had compromise the mission.
Thus, Kudos to the UK govt for this moment. And may information that they had be enough to help the world community react to better to the tragedy happening to Libya and the Libyan masses daily.
In a telephone call to an opposition spokesman, Britain's ambassador to Libya, Richard Northern, pleaded for the group to be released. The conversation was apparently intercepted by Libya's government and broadcast on state television.
"I understand that there has been a misunderstanding," Northern said in an excerpt of the call broadcast on Libyan TV. He asked if there was "anything we can do to help explain who they are and what they were doing," and whether Jalil could intervene to secure their release.
The unnamed opposition spokesman told Northern the group made "a big mistake coming in with a helicopter."
Abdel-Hafidh Ghoga, spokesman for the rebels' national council, said eight people with British passports were arrested, including one who claimed to be a British diplomat. He said the group had been detained "because they came into the country