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Turkish lawmakers authorise troop deployment to Libya

EPA-EFE/STR
Members of Turkish parliament attend an extraordinary meeting at the Grand National Assembly of Turkey (TBMM) in Ankara, Turkey, 02 January 2020.

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Turkish MPs authorised sending troops to Libya to help the UN-backed government of National Accord in Tripoli fight rival forces of General Khalifa Haftar.
During an emergency session that was held on Thursday, Turkish lawmakers voted 325-184  in favour of a one-year mandate to Ankara to deploy troops.
Erdogan said last month that the head of Libya’s government, Fayez al-Sarraj had requested Turkey’s support, after both countries signed a military agreement that allows Ankara to dispatch military experts and personnel to Libya.
One hour after the agreement, the US President Donald Trump had a phone conversation with the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, during which, the two leaders highlighted the importance of diplomacy in resolving regional issues and also discussed the situation in Syria.
Amid fears of escalation of violence in Libya’s civil war, the move is considered to deter rival Haftar forces that have been challenging the internationally recognised government of al-Sarraj, gaining vast swathes of land in the country.
The move was heavily criticised by Egypt, which said that the troops deployment could “negatively affect the stability of the Eastern Mediterranean region” and called the international community to urgently respond.
“A Libya whose legal government is under threat can spread instability to Turkey”, said Ismet Yilmaz, member of the ruling Justice and Development party (AKP), in defence of the motion.
 

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