Turkey Vows Wider Ties With New Libyan Government

Following a Thursday meeting with Libyan leaders in Ankara, Turkey vowed to “improve” ties with the beleaguered Mediterranean nation.

The statement followed a meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the leader of Libya’s government, Fayez al-Sarraj.

The meeting coincided with Sarraj’s Government of National Accord regaining control of Tripoli on Thursday from Libyan National Army forces under Khalifa Haftar.

Turkish armed forces provided military support to Sarraj’s forces during their push to retake Tripoli.

Tensions in the region increased last year when Turkey signed a maritime border agreement with Sarraj’s government. Ankara followed this with claims that the agreement gave it the right to drill for oil and gas in areas overlapping Greece’s continental shelf.

Athens, along with most of the rest of the world’s nations, does not recognize the agreement.

The government of Fayez al-Sarraj claimed to have won control of Libya’s capital Tripoli and its suburbs, including the main airport.

The fighting to retake Tripoli has killed hundreds and forced over 200,000 people to flee the region, according to international monitors.