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Libya score-settling moves closer to Turkey’s borders

Turkey’s intervention in the Libyan war is driving its adversaries to retaliate beyond Libya in conflict zones along Turkey’s own borders.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (R) and Libyan Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj (L) hold a joint press conference at the Presidential Complex in Ankara on June 4, 2020. (Photo by Adem ALTAN / AFP) (Photo by ADEM ALTAN/AFP via Getty Images)
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Turkey's regional rivals are going beyond Libya as they respond to the scale-tipping Turkish military intervention in the North African country. Having declared a red line at Sirte and al-Jufra on the Libyan battlefield, Egypt and its partners are stepping up efforts to impede Turkey on the diplomatic front as well as in Syria and Iraq.

While forging closer ties with Damascus, Egypt has at the same time focused on the Syrian Kurds, following in the steps of the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia. According to Turkey’s state-run Anadolu news agency, Egypt has now sent troops to Idlib, the rebel-held province where Turkey has built up a military presence to keep the Syrian army from advancing. Citing “reliable military sources,” Anadolu reported July 30 that about 150 Egyptian soldiers, arriving via the military airport in Hama, had been deployed to front lines in Khan al-Asal in the western countryside of Aleppo and around Saraqib in southern Idlib, armed with light weapons and coordinating with Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Iran-backed militias.

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