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World

AFP
January 3, 2020

Trump warns Erdogan against ´foreign interference´ in Libya

World

AFP
Fri, Jan 03, 2020

WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump on Thursday warned his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan against any "foreign interference" in Libya, the White House said, after Turkish lawmakers approved a military deployment to shore up the UN-backed government in Tripoli.

In a telephone call, Trump "pointed out that foreign interference is complicating the situation in Libya," White House spokesman Hogan Gidley said in a statement.

The government in Tripoli -- backed by Turkey and Qatar -- has been under sustained attack since April by military strongman General Khalifa Haftar, who is backed by Ankara´s regional rivals: Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates.

Erdogan has repeatedly accused Russia of sending private mercenaries to support Haftar´s forces, though Moscow has denied this.

The Turkish leader´s office confirmed last Friday that a request for military support had been received from the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA).

Following the vote by lawmakers, it is now up to Erdogan whether to send troops, or if military assistance will take another form.