Details are extremely scant, mostly because both nations continue to deny having ground troops in Libya, but a group of British and Italian special forces inside Libya were said to have been ambushed by ISIS forces in an incident on Wednesday.
The ambush included suicide bombers, and Italian troops were said to have been “killed or wounded” in the incident, while some reports also suggested some of the British special forces may have been captured in the attack, which began with vehicle bombers.
Reports from earlier this month suggested Italy is looking to lead a 6,000-troop ground invasion of Libya, with Britain expected to provide about 1,000 of those troops. The invasion is predicated on the UN-backed “unity government” ever getting enough legitimacy to endorse the invasion.
Yet Britain is believed to have had troops in Libya for months, as have the US, Italy, and France. The special forces deployments are being presented as something short of an invasion, however, with the US claiming their troops are there trying to find allies for a future war.