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Could Turkey’s military capacity match Erdogan’s ambitions in Libya?

Turkish military strategists have been working on a small, non-combat mission in Libya limited to train-and-equip purposes, yet recent developments suggest that Ankara could scale up the deployment plan amid lingering questions on whether the Turkish army is capable of delivering what Erdogan has promised his allies.

Following President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s pledges to help the Tripoli-based government in Libya’s civil war, military strategists in Ankara have been pondering the deployment of soldiers to Libya, an overseas country located some 2,000 kilometers (1,243 miles) away on a route surrounded by regional adversaries such as Egypt and Greece, and ensuring the safety of the troops during their mission there. 

A security source requesting anonymity told Al-Monitor, “If 150 to 200 soldiers, who could fit into an A400M [military transport plane], are to be sent on a non-combat mission in Libya, and if their protection would not require very heavy weapons and equipment, that would not be a problem. It would be a rather easy task.”

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