NATO member Denmark on Wednesday said it recognized the National Transitional Council as representing the Libyan people, the latest European nation to do so.
Visiting the rebel stronghold of Benghazi for talks, Danish Foreign Minister Lene Espersen praised the rebels' efforts to improve the lives of ordinary Libyans.
"In the current transition period Denmark regards the TNC as the sole legitimate representative of the Libyan people," she said.
The Nordic country -- which is still mending its ties with the Islamic world after controversy over cartoons of the prophet Mohammed published in a Danish newspaper -- becomes one of a dozen countries to make such a move.
The announcement came amid Western and allied introspection about the conduct of the war in Libya, which has been locked in a bloody stalemate.
Espersen had sharp words for NATO allies accused of not pulling their weight in the mission.
"There is something called burden-sharing. We would like for more countries to help make sure that the UN resolution is being put into force."
Among NATO members Germany has most notably refused to contribute fire power.
Germany recognizes rebels as representing Libya