As German Foreign Minister Maas visited Tripoli, Turkish Defence Minister Akar was also in the country to “observe activities” being conducted in line with the agreement reached between Turkey and Libya.

Libya's internationally recognised Prime Minister Fayez al Sarraj meets with defence ministers of Turkey, Hulusi Akar, and Qatar, Khalid bin Mohammad Al Atiye, in Tripoli, Libya August 17, 2020.
Libya's internationally recognised Prime Minister Fayez al Sarraj meets with defence ministers of Turkey, Hulusi Akar, and Qatar, Khalid bin Mohammad Al Atiye, in Tripoli, Libya August 17, 2020. (Reuters)

Libya has agreed with Turkey and Qatar to sign a tripartite deal for military cooperation to boost capabilities of the Libyan military.

The agreement was announced by Libya’s deputy defence minister Salah Al Namroush on Monday.

According to media office of the government-led Burkan Al Ghadab (Volcano of Rage) Operation, al Namroush said Turkey and Qatar will establish facilities in Libya for military training and consultancy.

He also added that as part of the deal, Turkey and Qatar will send consultants and military personnel to Libya.

Turkish and Qatari ministers emphasised that they support the political solution and the legitimate government, he added.

Earlier during the day, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar held a trilateral meeting with his Qatari counterpart Khalid bin Mohammad Al Attiyah and Libyan premier Fayez al Sarraj in Tripoli.

Akar, accompanied by Chief of General Staff General Yasar Guler, visited the Libyan prime minister’s office for the meeting.

He also visited the Defense Security Cooperation and Training Assistance Advisory Command that was established as part of a memorandum of understanding between Turkey and Libya.

The Turkish defence minister also held another trilateral meeting with his Qatari counterpart and Libya's Interior Minister Fathi Bashagha.

Visit by Turkish, Qatari and German ministers

Turkey and Qatar's defence ministers and Germany's foreign minister have visited the Libyan capital Tripoli amid efforts to secure a ceasefire in the divided country.

The two defence ministers both arrived in Libya on Monday, where they share a common interest in maintaining stability.

Turkey's Defence Minister Hulusi Akar met his Qatari counterpart to discuss bilateral security cooperation as well as regional issues. In the meeting, Akar and Khalid bin Mohammed el Atiye stressed the strategic partnership between the two countries. 

“We believe that we will achieve the wanted results by supporting our Libyan brothers in their just cause,” Akar said during his visit in the capital Tripoli.

READ MORE: Calm in Libya for now but 'problem persists' – Turkish FM

'Deceptive calm' 

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas also arrived in the Libyan capital at the same time.

Maas made an unannounced visit to Tripoli on Monday, saying that the world must not be deceived by the “deceptive calm” in Libya at the moment and should find a way to end the conflict.

Maas said in a statement upon arrival in the North African country that he was meeting with officials in the UN-recognised administration in the capital to “talk about ways out of this very dangerous situation” where both sides in the bloody civil war are being armed by international allies.

Forward Momentum

Turkey's defence minister and chief of general staff also visited Libya on the same day to review activities carried out under a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the two nations.

A military ceremony was held for Akar and General Guler upon their arrival at the Mitiga International Airport in the capital Tripoli.

Both Turkish officials went to the Defense Security Cooperation and Training Assistance Advisory Command, which was created as part of a MoU between Turkey and Libya.

READ MORE: Turkey’s ‘Blue Homeland’: striking a balance in the Eastern Mediterranean

Cooperation agreement

On November 27, 2019, Ankara and Tripoli signed two critical Memoranda of Understanding; one entailing a military cooperation agreement, and the other regarding maritime boundaries of countries in the eastern Mediterranean.

The maritime pact 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 resources in the area. The pact went into effect on December 8.

Following the military cooperation deal, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Ankara may consider sending troops to Libya if the internationally recognised Tripoli government made such a request.
READ MORE: Key aspects of Turkey’s Mediterranean mission, explained

War in Libya

Libya's UN-recognised government, formed in 2015 after the ousting of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, has faced a number of challenges, including attacks by warlord Khalifa Haftar.

In recent months, however, the UN-backed government has turned the tide against Haftar's militias.

Turkey supports the UN-backed legitimate government based in the capital Tripoli, and a non-military resolution of the crisis. Meanwhile, warlord Haftar has support from Russia, Egypt, the UAE, and France.

READ MORE: ‘I Gotta Story to Tell’: French interference in Libya

Source: TRTWorld and agencies