Top Turkish officials visit Libyan capital

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A delegation of Turkish ministers and intelligence chief paid a visit to Tripoli on May 3, the first visit from Turkey since the formation of an interim government in Libya.

“Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, the minister of foreign affairs of the Republic of Turkey, together with Hulusi Akar, the minister of national defense, and Hakan Fidan, the director of the National Intelligence Organization, will pay an official visit to Libya on May 3, 2021,” a statement by the Foreign Ministry said on May 3.

“During the visit, bilateral and regional issues will be discussed,” the Foreign Ministry said.

The Chief of General Staff Gen. Yaşar Güler and ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Foreign Affairs Deputy Chair Efkan Ala also accompanied the delegation.

Turkey considers it important that Libya’s integrity, sovereignty, independence, and political unity are protected, the county’s foreign minister said.

“We attach importance to the preservation of Libya’s integrity, sovereignty, independence, and political unity,”  Çavuşoğlu said at a news conference alongside his Libyan counterpart Najla Mangouch in Tripoli.

Libyan Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Mohammed Dbeibah and a delegation of ministers made their first visit to Turkey on April 12 since taking office in March and held a meeting of the Turkey-Libya High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council in Ankara.

Turkey had backed the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA) against the eastern-based Libyan National Army (LNA), which was supported by Russia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and France.

In 2019, Ankara signed a maritime demarcation agreement with the GNA in the eastern Mediterranean and a military cooperation accord under which Turkey sent military advisers and trainers to Tripoli.

Libya’s new unity government was sworn in on March 15 from two warring sides that had ruled eastern and western regions after completing a smooth transition of power after years of civil war that have engulfed the country since the ouster and killing of strongman Muammar al-Qaddafi in 2011.

Libyan prime minister, selected through a U.N.-led process, has said that economic deals between the GNA and Turkey should continue.

Hurriyet Daily News

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