Turkey will increase its military support to the internationally recognized government of Libya if necessary and will evaluate ground, air and marine options, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday, after the two signed a military cooperation accord last month.
Speaking in the northern province of Kocaeli, Erdogan said Turkey had recently provided “very serious” support to the GNA, adding Libya was a country Turkey would support “with its life”.
“They are supporting an illegal warlord, who is the pawn of certain nations, instead of the U.N.-recognized government,” Erdogan said, in an apparent reference to Haftar and the countries who support him.
“If necessary, we will increase the military aspect of our support to Libya, and evaluate all our options, from the ground, air and sea,” he said.
Speaking before Erdogan, Defence Minister Hulusi Akar said Turkey will stand by Libya’s government until peace, stability and security are established in the country.
Last month, Turkey and the GNA signed an accord to boost military cooperation and a separate deal on maritime boundaries, which has enraged Greece. Ankara and Athens have been at odds over hydrocarbon resources off the coast of the divided island of Cyprus.