Turkey urges Libya to avoid taking any actions that might rekindle the conflict
Turkey–In the midst of a crisis over executive power in Libya, Turkey advised the country’s leaders to avoid taking any measures that might lead to further violence and urged them to follow democratic processes. Libya’s political instability has worsened since a December election that was supposed to be part of a peace process to reunify the nation after years of disorder and conflict following a NATO-backed revolt in 2011.
Turkey has supplied military assistance and training to Libya’s previous internationally recognized Government of National Accord, assisting it in repelling an attack on Tripoli by eastern Libyan troops commanded by Khalifa Haftar that lasted several months. In Libya, it still has military personnel and militants from the Syrian militia. Ankara has backed the peace process but has been relatively silent since Libya’s recent unrest with the creation of two competing governments.
Turkey’s National Security Council (MGK) stated a “quiet in Libya that was won through great sacrifices” offered a chance for peace after an over 4-hour meeting led by President Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday. The MGK asked all parties involved in Libya to “refrain from actions that might lead to further confrontations” and urged Libyan authorities to “follow democratic processes on a foundation of legitimacy in order to achieve long-term peace and stability.” Last year, Ankara supported a temporary Government of National Unity to supervise the run-up to elections and reunify the country’s fragmented institutions.
When the polls failed, the eastern House of Representatives parliament, located in Tobruk, declared that the government’s mandate had ended, naming a new administration and calling elections for the next year. However, the unity government’s prime minister stated that he would only surrender power after elections, and armed troops from both sides have gathered in Tripoli, sparking worries of a new conflict or a return to territorial separation. A new election date has not been selected.