From Cassandra Vinograd, the AP: British intelligence agencies foiled an attack on the leadership of Libya’s National Transitional Council and Western representatives by forces loyal to Moammar Gadhafi, Foreign Secretary William Hague said Wednesday.
Hague said the overseas intelligence agency MI6 and electronic listening agency GCHQ played a key role in the successful NATO-led operation in Libya by offering insight into the intentions of forces backing the late dictator and how battles in key cities were progressing.
"They saved lives," Hague declared.
On one occasion, Hague said, the Gadhafi regime had tried to attack the National Transitional Council in the Libyan city of Benghazi and kill some of the Western representatives in the country.
"The agencies obtained firm intelligence, were able to warn the NTC of the threat, and the attacks were prevented," he said in a rare public address about the work of Britain’s intelligence services.
The foreign secretary is responsible for MI6 and GCHQ. He acknowledged the ethical dilemmas posed by secret intelligence work, saying he personally reviewed hundred of proposals for intelligence operations a year, not all of which were approved. (photo: Getty)