Turkish Aircrafts Heading To Western Libya

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On Monday, the ItaMilRadar website monitored two Turkish Airbus A400M cargo planes heading towards the western coast of Libya.

The website confirmed that the two Airbus A400 planes took off from Turkey to the Al-Watiya airbase, and Misrata Airport. The website added that they carried out six consecutive daily flights last week, departing from Ankara.

This is in conjunction with the departure of a private plane belonging to the Turkish intelligence service, from Ankara on Monday morning, on an unannounced flight to Mitiga Airport in Tripoli.

Notably, ItaMilRadar specializes in monitoring aircraft movements over Italy and the Mediterranean.

Turkey continues to transport military supplies to western Libya, despite the fact that the UN-brokered ceasefire agreement stipulates that all military cooperation with foreign nations must be halted.

In May, Turkish Defense Minister, Hulusi Akar stated that the Turkish soldiers and Syrian mercenaries in Libya would remain to preserve Ankara’s interests in Libya.

The UN estimates there are over 20,000 foreign fighters and mercenaries in Libya, helping both sides of the conflict.

In April 2019, the Libyan National Army (LNA) led by Khalifa Haftar launched an offensive on Tripoli. The former Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA) requested help from Turkey in November 2019 to avert an LNA takeover. Ankara soon began to airlift thousands of Syrian mercenaries, and an array of weapons to support the GNA.

Notably, professor of political science at Omar Al-Mukhtar Al-Libi University, Yusef Al-Farsi said that the Turkish air bridge to western Libya was impeding international political efforts that aim to address the Libyan crisis by peaceful means.

Earlier this month, two Turkish military A400 cargo planes travelling from Ankara landed at Al-Watiya airbase in western Libya.

According to data provided by Flightradar24, the two military planes arrived at the same time, one of them registered with the number 0080-17, and the other with the number 0051-15.