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Turkey Defies International Warnings, Continues Violating Arms Embargo on Libya

Turkey Defies International Warnings, Continues Violating Arms Embargo on Libya

Sunday, 9 August, 2020 - 12:00
GNA members are seen after taking control of al-Watiya airbase, southwest of Tripoli, Libya, May 18, 2020. Reuters

Turkey continues to violate the arms embargo on Libya by sending arms and mercenaries to support Fayez al-Sarraj’s Government of National Accord despite international warnings.

According to Italy’s ItaMilRadar website, which specializes in tracking military flights over the Mediterranean, a Turkish Air Force Lockheed C-130B left al-Watiya Air Base for Turkey on Saturday.

The air force departed from Libya on Friday returning to Turkey, the website noted.

Meanwhile, reports have stated that the new shipment included four drones and advanced medium and light weapons, including M4 rifles.

In news titled “the airlift between Turkey and western Libya continues,” the website pointed out that “in recent weeks the flights have almost always been directed to this air base instead of to Tripoli or Misrata as happened during the first days of the Turkish airlift.”

Meanwhile, Turkish reports have revealed that Turkey had repaired and developed al-Watiya military base in western Libya, a month after its destruction in strikes by unidentified warplanes.

They said the base is now prepared to receive planes to launch attacks and airstrikes on Marshal Khalifa Haftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA) sites in Sirte and Jufra.

The LNA, however, has deployed the Russian S-300 system to thwart any attacks by Turkish aircraft.

Perpetrator of al-Watiya base strike hasn’t yet been revealed. It came after Turkey’s announcement to supply the military base with missile air defense systems.

According to the same reports, Turkey sent KORAL Electronic Warfare System to Libya’s base, in addition to defense systems and radars.

It continues to send weapons to the GNA, while accusing other countries, including Russia and the UAE, of sending weapons to the LNA.

In other news, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said the European Union marine mission to supervise the Libyan arms embargo (Irini mission) is a “biased operation.”

In a visit to Tripoli on Thursday, Cavusoglu said Germany is the host of the Berlin conference, so it needs to be neutral and objective.

“If it [Germany] takes part in a biased operation, it will lose its impartiality,” he added.

His remarks were in reference to the German frigate, “Hamburg,” which set sail from Wilhelmshaven in northern Germany on Tuesday. It is carrying 250 soldiers and has departed at the start of a five-month mission.

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