ANKARA (AA) – The Turkish parliament has approved a motion to extend troop deployment in Libya for another 18 months as of July 2.
The motion was submitted by the Turkish Presidency in the light of a request for military assistance by Libya’s UN-recognized government on June 13.
“Türkiye continues its strong support for the protection of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political unity of Libya, the establishment of a permanent cease-fire in the country, and the efforts of political dialogue that will ensure national reconciliation …” the motion said.
“Political uncertainty … that arose after the failure to hold the elections scheduled for December 24, 2021 in Libya jeopardizes the tranquility established on the ground … and poses a serious obstacle to achieving permanent stability,” it added.
The motion said the risks and threats emanating from Libya for the entire region, including Türkiye, continue, adding that if the attacks against Libya’s legitimate government resume, Türkiye’s interests both in the Mediterranean basin and in North Africa would be adversely affected.
Türkiye’s parliament first allowed the deployment of troops in Libya for one year in January 2020. The mandate was extended for another 18 months until July 2022.
On Nov. 27, 2019, Ankara and Tripoli signed a pact on military cooperation, as well as an agreement on maritime boundaries in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Libya, an oil-rich country, has remained in turmoil since 2011 when longtime ruler Muammar Gaddafi was ousted after four decades in power.
The country has since seen the emergence of two rival seats of power: one in eastern Libya, to which military commander Khalifa Haftar is affiliated, and the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord, which enjoys UN recognition.