Erdogan says Turkey to increase support for Libya's Serraj

Reuters , AFP , Thursday 4 Jun 2020

Erdogan and al-Serraj
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan meets with Libya's UN recognised Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj at the Presidential Palace in Ankara, Turkey, June 4, 2020. (Photo: Reuters)

President Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday Turkey will increase its support for Libya's leader Fayez al Serraj and that the conflict there can only be resolved politically under the auspices of the United Nations.

"Turkey would advance its cooperation with Libya including searching for hydrocarbons in the eastern Mediterranean, as part of a bilateral maritime deal reached between the two governments".

Erdogan also welcomed the recent advances made by the Tripoli government on the battlefield saying it was right to use "self-defence", adding that Haftar cannot remain at the negotiating table.

Erdogan said eastern commander Khalifa Haftar and his supporters are the biggest obstacle to peace.

"An individual who constantly threatens the future of Libya cannot have a representation capability at the table," the Turkish leader said.

He also criticised outside countries backing Haftar, saying they were "the biggest obstacle before peace" in Libya. "History will judge them."

* This story was edited by Ahram Online. 

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