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Turkey Accuses Greece of Hampering Peace Efforts in Libya

Turkey Accuses Greece of Hampering Peace Efforts in Libya

Sunday, 26 January, 2020 - 10:15
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks to media next to FM Mevlut Cavusoglu after the Global Refugee Forum at the UN in Geneva, Switzerland, December 17, 2019. (Reuters)
Ankara - Saeed Abdulrazek

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu renewed accusations against Greece of hindering peace efforts in Libya through receiving Libyan National Army (LNA) Commander Khalifa Haftar ahead of last week’s Berlin conference.


Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan slammed Greece for the same reason.


“The Greek-Greek Cypriot duo extorts the rights of neighboring countries with their extremist claims in the Eastern Mediterranean,” said a statement by Cavusoglu.


“Trying to legitimize these claims by taking advantage of the EU harms peace and stability in the region,” he added.


The two pacts Turkey “signed with the legitimate government in Libya have alarmed Greece. Instead of dialogue, they severed diplomatic relations with the legitimate government. Unfortunately, they act with the understanding that ‘The enemy of my enemy is my friend’,” he said.


“Actually behind this, there are efforts to impose maritime jurisdiction claims on Libya. In the past years, they have set up oil and gas license areas to the south of Crete in a way that usurps the rights and interests of Libya. When faced with this situation, the legitimate government of Libya signed a memorandum of understanding with us to protect their rights,” the FM explained.


Meanwhile, Turkey accused Greece of ignoring calls to resolve the dispute over Aegean Sea islands through negotiations.


Foreign Ministry spokesman Hami Aksoy said Saturday that Turkey is ready to revive all dialogue channels with Greece, but he accused Athens of not cooperating.


He added that Turkey has always objected against the violation of the demilitarized status of the islands by Greece or another country, saying Ankara has submitted several initiatives to resolve the issue.


Turkey is keen on ending the dispute with negotiations, he stated.


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