Greek Foreign Minister demand Turkey to leave Libya

Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Greece Nikos Dendias

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias met today with the president of the Libyan Parliament, Aguila Saleh, in Tobruk, eastern Libya. According to Athens Foreign Ministry’s press release, Dendias condemned the foreign interventions and, primarily Turkey’s interference in Libya internal affairs. “We had the opportunity to agree together on how to address the crisis in Libya.”Nikos Dendias said, noting that for Greece the president Aguila Saleh is the only legitimate interlocutor in the North African country.

The Hellenic Foreign Minister explained that the solution to the Libyan crisis may come under the Berlin Process and the action-plan proposed last month by the Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi. “The withdrawal of all foreign forces is a prerequisite for peace and stability.” He stressed, highlighting that “Turkey has a historical responsibility for what is happening in Libya today”, with an “aggravated” position by the transfer of mercenaries from Syria and the violation of the United Nation’s arms embargo toward the country.

Dendias also said he spoke to Saleh about the possibility of creating a Greek consulate in Benghazi to facilitate trade and bilateral cooperation. “We also discussed the demarcation of the maritime borders between Greece and Libya.”  Dendiascontinued, underlining that this will happen under international law and not as for the invalid memorandum between Ankara and Tripoli, rejected by Libyans, EU and the international community in general.

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All foreign powers, especially Turkey, should leave Libya, is the Greece’s Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias’ message. The House of Representatives, the eastern-based Parliament of Libya, is internationally recognized as for the Presidential Council in Tripoli. Both were created by the Political Agreement, signed in Skhirat, Morocco in 2015. The Parliamentis aligned with the Libyan National Army (LNA), led by Marshall Khalifa Haftar, in its conflict with the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA), which is backed by the Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the Muslim Brotherhood. Turkey has sent thousands of Syrian mercenaries to the North-African country and helped the GNA lift the siege of Tripoli, putting the LNA-controlled city of Sirte under threat.

The GNA, led by the Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj, signed in October 2019 with Ankara, a controversial maritime agreement that gives Erdogan drilling rights over vast swathes of the Eastern Mediterranean, damaging the interests of several third countries, in particular Greece, Cyprus, Egypt, and Israel whose along with the EU have condemned the deal. Between the Syrian mercenaries moved into Libya, were reported also children and dangerous jihadists. The latest are now trying to reach European coasts, infiltrating among the migrants who continue to depart towards Italy and Malta from Western Libya.

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