ISTANBUL - Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he is ready to deploy soldiers to Libya following the announcement of a security agreement with the Libyan government. Ankara has been actively seeking to project its influence across the Mediterranean as a scramble intensifies for the region's energy resources.
"If Libya were to make a request, we would send a sufficient number of troops," Erdogan said Tuesday in an address to university students in Ankara. "After the signing of the security agreement, there is no hurdle."
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan participates in a round table meeting during a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Dec. 4, 219.
In what many analysts see as a surprise move, Ankara earlier this month reached two agreements with Libya's Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA).
"It's only natural if the Libya government invited Turkey to provide assistance to deploy Turkish forces in accordance with this agreement. It's entirely normal," said former Turkish ambassador Mithat Rende. "Because there are so many countries that already are part of the game. This General Haftar is heavily supported by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, France, and I also understand, the Russian Federation."
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