ANKARA (Sputnik) – Ankara will deem the eastern-based Libyan National Army (LNA) a “legitimate target” ought to it attempt to assault Turkish troops deployed within the North African nation, Defense Minister Hulusi Akar has mentioned.
On Saturday, Akar visited Libya on the helm of Turkey’s navy prime brass. The delegation met with senior state and navy officers from the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA) and visited Turkish troops deployed within the nation. Days earlier than the go to, the commander of the rival LNA, Khalifa Haftar, urged his military to clear the nation of Turkish “colonisers”.
AFP 2020 / MAHMUD TURKIALibyan troopers (File)
In January, Ankara introduced that it was deploying troops to Libya to help the Tripoli-based GNA in its years-long combat towards the LNA, which controls the nation’s east. Turkish forces are nonetheless stationed within the North African nation, and on Tuesday, Turkey’s parliament green-lighted President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s request to prolong the mandate of Turkish troops in Libya for an additional 18 months.