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Libya’s parliament reaches out to Ankara leaving Gen. Hifter in the cold

The recent visit by a Libyan parliamentary delegation to Ankara might indicate a serious rift between eastern Libya’s allies forcing Gen. Khalifa Hifter to reconsider his choices.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (R) and Libyan Government of National Accord Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibah attend a signing ceremony after their meeting at the Presidential Palace in Ankara, Turkey, April 12, 2021.

A group of Libyan parliamentarians paid an official visit to Turkey Dec. 15, meeting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the parliament speaker. The seven-member group, headed by Libya’s deputy parliament Speaker Fawzi al-Nuwairi, arrived in Ankara for the two-day visit invited by the Turkish parliament’s Libyan-Turkish Parliamentary Friendship Group. Little is said about what was discussed with the president. However, the Libyan side said in a statement that they discussed commercial and consular issues.

The vague statement, published on the Libyan parliament’s website, said that the guests also “discussed” matters including reopening of the Turkish Consulate in Benghazi, resumption of flights and reactivation of maritime links between eastern Libya and Turkey. Ankara closed its consulate in May 2014 citing security concerns because of clashes between different militias and Gen. Khalifa Hifter’s forces.

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