Turkey and Libya signed two agreements on defence cooperation this week, which according to one of the agreements, will see the Turkish armed forces help train Libyan military pilots to increase the efficiency of the country’s air force.
Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar and Libyan Prime Minister and Defense Minister Abdul-Hamed Dbeibah signed the two agreements when they met on the sidelines of a defence and aerospace industry fair in Istanbul earlier this week.
Another agreement focuses on improving the existing military relations between Turkey and Libya, aiming to implement a 2019 security cooperation deal signed between turkey and Libya’s Government of National Accord (GNA), which dissolved in 2021 and was superseded by the current Government of National Unity (GNU) headed by Dbeibah.
In 2019, Ankara and the GNA signed two memorandums of understanding on military cooperation and maritime boundaries in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Turkey has provided military support for the Tripoli-based GNA and its successor GNU, including sending troops to Libya, against east-based forces under Libyan commander Khalifa Haftar following the deal.
Earlier this month, Turkey and the GNU signed a memorandum of understanding for cooperation on gas and oil.
Soon after, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias described the deal as a “threat to regional stability,” stressing that achieving stability in Libya and in the eastern Mediterranean region is one of the “strategic goals” for both Greece and Egypt.
Libya has been suffering political instability and chaos ever since the fall of the late leader Muammar Gaddafi’s regime in 2011.
In February, the Libyan House of Representatives, or the parliament, appointed a new government headed by Fathi Bashagha.
However, Tripoli-based Prime Minister Dbeibah refused to hand over power, saying his government would continue working and only hand over office to an elected government.