The Libyan army is officially at war with Turkey
The Libyan National Army (LNA) general command spokesman Ahmed Al-Mismari said on Tuesday that his forces are “at war with Turkey, and it is a real confrontation, exacerbated by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.”Al-Mismari explained in an interview with Sky News Arabia that the Libyan army is in a state of war with Turkey. “We got into a real fight, and no one announced the end of the battle.” The spokesman said, adding: “Rather, we have announced a ceasefire out of respect for the efforts of the international community and the friends and wishes of Libyans to end the war, but Erdogan has never stopped transferring weapons to Libya.”
Haftar’s spokesman, Ahmed al Mismari, said in the afternoon that the Jamaican-owned but Turkish-owned ship “Mabruka” had entered an area off-limits to unauthorized shipping and did not comply with the docking order in the port of Ras Al-Hilal “. Violations that led to the intervention of Haftar’s forces, who carried out an inspection onboard, which revealed the presence of a shipment of drugs, but not of weapons. The Turkish media, on the other hand, reply with the version of the Turkish shipowners, who indicate in the ship’s cargo food and other perfectly legal cargoes, all goods destined for the city of Misurata, a strong ally of the Ankara government.
The General Command announced, on Monday evening, the interception of a Turkish ship, directed to the port of Misrata in the west of the country, in violation of the ban imposed on Libya on the supply of weapons. Al-Mismari said: “Since 2016, we have also prevented Libyan fishing boats from entering the Libyan military zone and were surprised that the Turkish ship entered this area, without the coordination or knowledge of the Libyan Coast Guard.”
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“We called the ship, and they didn’t answer us, and it didn’t follow the international procedures provided in this situation when it entered the line 34. So, there are three mistakes made by the ship’s captain,” he added. On the other hand, the spokesman for the General Command said, “We are now awaiting the implementation of the expulsion of foreigners according to the 90-day deadline set by the United Nations mission. If the mission manages to expel them, we Libyans are very easy to understand”. Turkey responded harshly to the arrest of the ship. The Foreign Ministry condemned “with the utmost firmness the arrest of the vessel. we recall once again that if Turkish interests in Libya are targeted there will be serious consequences and authors of these actions will be considered legitimate objectives.”
Turkey has signed two agreements with the Libyan government in Tripoli since November 2019. The first to delimit maritime borders, while the second establishes forms of military cooperation between Ankara and Tripoli. And this second agreement kicked off the important military operation by which Turkey effectively saved the government of Fayez Serraj from the assault of the Libyan Army and its allies. After attacking Tripoli in the spring of 2019, in June 2020, the general of Cyrenaica stopped the siege of the capital. Haftar retreated his troops towards the city of Sirte, halfway along the coast between Tripoli and Benghazi.