London: Britain’s defence ministry said on Tuesday that it was cutting short a training programme for Libyan troops after reported sexual assaults allegedly involving five of the servicemen.
Some 300 members of the north African country’s armed forces have been based at the Bassingbourn Barracks in Cambridgeshire, eastern England, since July.
“Training was initially expected to last until the end of November but we have agreed with the Libyan government that it is best for all involved to bring forward the training completion date,” the ministry said.
“The recruits will be returning to Libya in the coming days.”Three of the Libyan soldiers Ibrahim El Maarfi, Mohammed Abdalsalam and Khaled El Azibi were due in court in Cambridge on Tuesday.
Maarfi and Abdalsalam have each admitted two counts of sexual assault. Azibi has been charged with three counts of sexual assault but has yet to enter a plea, British media reported. Two other servicemen, Moktar Ali Saad Mahmoud and Ibrahim Abogutila, have been charged with raping a man, Cambridge News reported....