Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said that the Libyan National Army’s (LNA) commander, Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, was an “unreliable” figure since he continued to bomb the capital of Tripoli, which is currently under the Government of National Accord’s (GNA) control, this week, VOICEPRESS reports citing Sputnik.
“Haftar is unreliable, as yesterday he continued to bomb Tripoli, and we will see this clearly at the Berlin conference and what he will do after [it]”, Erdogan told reporters.
Erdogan also revealed his intention to discuss the latest developments Syria’s Idlib at the UN-led conference on Libyan settlement in the German capital on Sunday, and that he would hold talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the matter. Putin confirmed his attendance at the conference earlier in the day.
During his talks with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis earlier in the day, Haftar said that the LNA’s forces “are pacifists”, and that he was ready to sign an agreement with GNA Prime Minister Fayez Sarraj if certain conditions were met.
Earlier in January, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan stated that Ankara would be sending troops to Libya, adding that Turkey would use both military and diplomatic means to ensure “stability” in the country. Turkey supports the UN-recognised GNA and has sent troops to prop it up amid an attack by troops loyal to Haftar, who has the support of Egypt and the United Arab Emirates.
On 13 January, both Haftar and Sarraj participated in talks in Moscow that were aimed at concluding a ceasefire deal. However, Haftar left the Russian capital without signing anything, explaining that he needed additional time to look through its details.
In November, Turkey and the GNA signed an agreement on a new maritime border, which runs through gas-rich zones in the Mediterranean that Greece and Cyprus claim as theirs.
The accord has triggered a backlash from the eastern Libyan administration, as well as Athens, Nicosia, Paris, Rome and Cairo.