David Cameron invited to give evidence to inquiry on Libya

Barack Obama has criticised the British prime minister for his actions over Libya

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Image: Yui Mok / PA Wire/Press Association Images

David Cameron has been invited to appear before a British foreign affairs committee over Libya, amid controversy about UK involvement in the war-torn country.

The move comes after the US President Barack Obama criticised Mr Cameron for his actions over Libya.

The American leader said European nations, including the UK, had joined the US military action to prevent a massacre in the north African state back in 2011, but then failed to prevent the country becoming a "mess" following the overthrow of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi.

Mr Obama put some of the blame for chaos in Libya on Mr Cameron becoming "distracted" by other priorities.

There have also been claims - denied by the British government - that the UK could send a thousand ground troops to the conflict-hit north African state as part of an international force of 6,000.

The Commons Foreign Affairs Committee said it had been told, during a visit to the region, that the force would train the Libyan army and provide security for the newly-appointed national unity government.

Libya's newly-formed UN-backed Government of National Accord, currently based in Tunisia's capital Tunis, is also set to request airstrikes against Islamic State targets, according to the MPs.

A government spokesman said what the committee had been told was "wrong on a number of counts".

Mr Cameron has also told MPs that any plans to send "conventional forces" for training in Libya would be put before Parliament for debate.

Appearing before the committee in February, British foreign office minister Tobias Ellwood said the UK was prepared to "advise, assist, support and train" a national unity government in taking on IS, adding: "We are not going in there to hold and take ground."