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Turkish drones in Libya are a strategic and family affair

Drones manufactured by the company of the Turkish president’s son-in-law been prominently involved in what has become a proxy war between Turkey and the UAE in Libya.
A police oficer stands next to an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) during Teknofest airshow at the city's new airport under construction in Istanbul, Turkey September 22, 2018. REUTERS/Umit Bektas - RC1D5D404840
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A war of drones involving Turkey has escalated in Libya in recent weeks, as Khalifa Hifter’s Libyan National Army, backed by Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), continues to target Tripoli. While the appearance of Turkish drones in the war theater is an unequivocal sign of Ankara’s support for the Tripoli and Misrata forces, the drone tussle between Turkey and the UAE has an aspect less spoken about, namely a link to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s family.

The Bayraktar TB2 drones that have shown up in Libyan skies are manufactured by the Baykar company, a family business of Erdogan’s son-in-law Selcuk Bayraktar, who is married to the younger of the president’s two daughters. Hifter’s forces have already shot down several Turkish-supplied drones, and the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord is said to have ordered more drones from Baykar.

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