Turkish Parliament votes for sending troops to Libya - Press photo
CAIRO - 2 January 2020: Turkey’s Parliament voted on Wednesday for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s proposal to send Turkish troops to Libya, which is expected to deepen the Libyan crisis and mount tensions in the Middle East and North Africa.
Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), which constitute the majority of the Parliament, supported the bill, while the opposition, the Peoples' Democratic Party and the Republican People's Party stood against it.
The bill, which aimed to give one-year mandate to Erdogan to send troops to Libya, says the objective of sending troops is to “protect” the Turkish national interests against security risks posed by “illegal armed groups in Libya," in indication to the Arab-supported Libyan national army led by Khalifa Haftar.
Turkey interfered into the Libyan turmoil when Erdogan and Fayez al-Sarraj reached a deal in February 2019 on drawing maritime borders in the Mediterranean Sea, and enhancing military cooperation. The deal provoked anger in Egypt, Cyprus and Greece, which voiced their rejection of the deal as it contradicts with the international agreements.
Egypt’s President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi affirmed the need to put an end to the illegal foreign interference in the Libyan issue, a month after Turkey and the Tripoli-based government led by Sarraj agreed on the accords.
“Egypt affirms that such memoranda possess no legal effect, as they cannot be recognized in light of the fact that Article 8 of the Skhirat Political Agreement on Libya, widely accepted by Libyans, defines the competences conferred to the Council of Ministers, expressly stipulating that the Council of Ministers as an entity – and not the president of the council alone – has the power to conclude international agreements,” the Egyptian Foreign Ministry earlier said in a statement.