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Turkey says Haftar’s forces should withdraw from Sirte for consolidating Libya ceasefire

Turkey said Saturday Khalifa Haftar’s forces in eastern Libya need to withdraw from the strategic city of Sirte for a lasting ceasefire and accused France of “jeopardising” NATO security by backing him.

Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalın told AFP that Turkey supports the position of the UN-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli, and that Sirte and Al-Jufra should be evacuated by Haftar’s forces for a “sustainable ceasefire.”

Kalin said a ceasefire in Libya would be possible if everybody went back to their positions in 2015, referring to an agreement reached that year.

“This is the position of the GNA and we support it because right now the Haftar forces are using strategic locations as their launching pad against the legitimate government,” he said.

“They are also using these places to use Libyan oil resources to finance their war,” warning against a rushed truce.

“A rushed, premature ceasefire will not lead to what we want to achieve for all Libyans there.” Kalın indicated.

Kalin also accused France of “jeopardising” NATO’s security by supporting Haftar, whose forces have been conducting an offensive to take the capital Tripoli since last year.

“In Libya we are supporting the legitimate government and the French government is supporting an illegitimate warlord and jeopardising NATO security, Mediterranean security, North African security and Libya’s political stability,” he said

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