Turkey-Libya military deal to ‘contribute to stability’

A recent agreement between Turkey and Libya on military cooperation will make a "great" contribution to the stability of the two countries, Turkey's deputy foreign minister said on Monday.

In an address to parliament's Foreign Affair Committee, Faruk Kaymakci told lawmakers that the government signed the agreement to further improve the relations with Libya.

"We think that the agreement will make a great contribution both to provide stability and to strengthen infrastructure in Libya, and to protect the interest of our country in the eastern Mediterranean and North Africa," Kaymakci said.

He noted that the agreement would form the legal infrastructure to Turkey-Libya relations.

Seeking to "provide a ground for relations and develop cooperation" between Turkey and Libya's UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA), the agreement includes increased cooperation in the exchange of personnel, materials, equipment, consultancy and experience between the two sides.

It also offers Turkish support for the establishment of a Quick Reaction Force for police and military in Libya, as well as enhanced cooperation on intelligence and defense industry, among others.

On Nov. 27, Ankara and Tripoli-based Libyan government reached two separate memorandums of understanding (MoU), one on military cooperation and the other one on maritime boundaries of countries in the Eastern Mediterranean.

The earlier memorandum on maritime boundaries asserted Turkey's rights in the Eastern Mediterranean in the face of unilateral drilling by the Greek Cypriot administration, clarifying that the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) also has rights to the resources in the area. It went into effect on Dec. 8.

Following the military cooperation deal, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan recently said Ankara might consider sending troops to Libya if the Libyan government made such a demand.

Source: Anadolu Agency