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Will Turkey remain involved in Libya?

Although some perceive Turkey’s walking out of the Palermo conference as stepping back from the Libya process, it doesn’t mean that Turkey is giving up its struggle for influence.
PALERMO, ITALY - NOVEMBER 12:  Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte welcomes Fuat Oktay, Vice President of Turkey during the Conference for Libya at Villa Igiea on November 12, 2018 in Palermo, Italy. Heads of State, ministers and special envoys are holding a two day meeting where they will discuss about security and stability in Libya.  (Photo by Tullio Puglia/Getty Images)
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The struggle of international actors for influence in Libya continues to hamper moves to end the divisions in the country. Libya is still a scene for competition between Italy and France on the one hand and between the Turkey-Qatar-Sudan and Egypt-Saudi Arabia-UAE blocs on the other. The Egypt-Saudi-UAE bloc supports the Tobruk-based House of Representatives and military strongman Khalifa Hifter, the Libyan National Army commander who opposes the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord. Hifter, also supported by France, doesn’t conceal his enmity for Qatar and Turkey, countries he accuses of financing the Islamists. Russia, which enabled international intervention in 2011 but now regrets that decision, wants to find itself a place in Libya and is also supporting Hifter.

Turkey, which maintains silence when it comes to French and Italian initiatives that backed the efforts of UN envoy to Libya Ghassan Salame, was aiming at finding a place for itself at the Palermo conference held in Sicily.

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