On Tuesday, the Turkish parliament approved the extension of its troops’ deployment in Libya for another 18 months.
Turkey’s presence in Libya is linked to its broader interests in the eastern Mediterranean, where it is looking for natural gas in disputed waters claimed by Cyprus and Greece.
Ankara struck an agreement with the Government of National Accord’s (GNA) leadership in November 2019, that extended Turkey’s maritime claims in the Mediterranean in exchange for military support.
Turkey’s parliament authorized the first one-year troop deployment to Libya in January of this year.
On December 12, Turkey’s presidency submitted a motion to parliament to extend troop deployment in Libya for 18 months.
The motion stressed that the aim of sending Turkish forces to Libya is to protect national interests and to take all necessary precautions against security dangers to armed forces in the North African nation.
It also added that Turkey will maintain the Memorandum of Understanding on Security and Military Cooperation signed in 2019 with Libya. As a result, Ankara will continue to provide training and consultancy support to Libya.
The MoU signed in 2019 between Turkey and the GNA involves technical information, support, development, maintenance, repair, planning, material support and training as well as consultancy services regarding the use of weapons systems and equipment.