PARIS: Libya’s UN-backed government on Wednesday criticized the presence of French troops in the chaos-wracked country, as President Francois Hollande confirmed France has soldiers there after three died. The presence of the troops in Libya was a “violation” of the nation’s sovereignty, the government of national accord said on its Facebook page following Hollande’s announcement that its soldiers had been in the country. The government said it would welcome “any help given to us by friendly nations in the fight against Daesh,” using another name for the Islamic State group, which controls the key Libyan city of Sirte. But any assistance given “should be based on a request (by the Libyan unity government) or in coordination” with it, the statement added. Hundreds of people took to the streets of several Libyan cities to protest against the French military presence, mainly in Tripoli and Misrata, some 200 kilometers (125 miles) east of the capital, according to an Agence France-Presse photographer and Libyan television.