Erdogan: Turkey has started sending troops to Libya

ISTANBUL, Christine-Felice Roehrs and Linda Say (dpa)– Turkey has started sending troops to Libya, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in an interview with CNN Turk late Sunday.
"Our soldiers are gradually moving out," he said. How many soldiers and what kind of troops Turkey is sending remained unclear.

According to the report, Erdogan spoke of "different teams" that were to take on coordination tasks at first. But he also said high-ranking officers including a general were among those being sent out.
Erdogan received a mandate from parliament for the deployment of troops on Thursday. He plans to support the internationally recognized government of Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj in Tripoli. It is engaged in a power struggle with powerful General Khalifa Haftar.
In November, Turkey and al-Serraj's Libyan Government of National Accord signed two controversial agreements on military and security cooperation and maritime borders.
Erdogan has faced criticism from the opposition at home and from Egypt and Russia over his moves to deploy troops to Libya.
The Turkish president has said that the Government of National Accord, which Ankara supports, requested that Turkey send its troops.
Erdogan also said he was to speak with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Monday. They are to discuss the situation in Iran and Iraq after the US killed top Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad on Friday.

Monday, January 6th 2020
Christine-Felice Roehrs and Linda Say (dpa)

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