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Turkey Stresses it Will Keep its Military Presence in Libya's Tripoli

Turkey Stresses it Will Keep its Military Presence in Libya's Tripoli

Monday, 4 April, 2022 - 10:00
A picture released by the Turkish Anadolu news agency shows Turkish soldiers having the Suhoor meal in Tripoli. (Anadolu)

Turkey said it will maintain its military presence in the Libyan capital, Tripoli.

Turkey's Anadolu state news agency published pictures on Sunday showing Turkish soldiers eating “the first Suhoor meal” (the pre-dawn meal before the day’s fast) in Tripoli.

The forces were initially deployed in Libya as part of a military cooperation agreement concluded between Turkey and the former Government of National Accord in 2019.

Anadolu reported on the observance of Ramadan in the joint ground-training center, which is affiliated with the leadership of the Turkish army’s Libyan task group.

It quoted commander of the logistical support battalion Ismail Unal as saying that his forces are keen and determined to carry out the tasks assigned to them around the world.

Meanwhile, Fathi Bashagha, who was appointed prime minister by the eastern-based parliament in March, expects to peacefully take over government in Tripoli in the coming days.

Abdulhamid al-Dbeibah, who was made interim prime minister a year ago in a United Nations-backed process, has refused to cede power to Bashagha after a planned election collapsed in December and remains ensconced in the capital, backed by some armed groups.

After the election process fell apart, the parliament said Dbeibah’s government had expired and selected Bashagha to head a new transitional period towards elections next year - a move rejected by other factions.

Bashagha expressed hope that the holy month of Ramadan will be an opportunity to bring Libyans together and promote a spirit of tolerance and unity.

He issued a statement hoping this month to be an opportunity to unite ranks and reject division and differences, urging Libyans to stand together and prioritize the nation’s interests.

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