The Turkish parliament has passed a bill giving a green light to the deployment of Turkish troops in Libya after discussions were held on 2 January. 325 lawmakers voted in favour of the motion, while only 184 rejected it.
“A Libya whose legal government is under threat can spread instability to Turkey. Those who shy away from taking steps on grounds that there is a risk will throw our children into a greater danger”, said Ismet Yilmaz, a member of the governing AKP party of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
The decision was met with condemnation from Egypt, which opposes Ankara’s decision to send troops to the civil war-torn country.
The bill was introduced after the country signed an agreement on military cooperation in 2019 with the Libyan Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli, with the latter requesting military assistance from Turkey.
Tripoli has been under siege by General Khalifa Haftar, whose forces control most of the eastern part of the country, but is not recognised by the UN, unlike the GNA. Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay earlier said that Ankara would send “the necessary number [of troops]” when needed, but added that it wouldn’t be necessary if the Libyan National Army (LNA), led by Haftar, halts its offensive against Tripoli.