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Trump warns Erdogan intervention in Libya will lead to deterioration

US President has had a phone call with his Turkish counterpart

WASHINGTON, February 17. /TASS/. US President Donald Trump has had a phone call with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan to warn him that carrying on with intervention into Libya will only undermine the situation further, Deputy White House press secretary Judd Deere told reporters on Sunday.

"President Trump also reiterated that continued foreign interference in Libya would only serve to worsen the situation," Deere stressed.

Currently, Libya has two supreme executive authorities, namely Tripoli’s Government of National Accord recognized by the international community and headed by Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj and the interim government headed by Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thani, which operates in the country’s east along with the elected parliament and is supported by the Libyan National Army (LNA) led by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar. On April 4, Haftar announced the launch of an offensive in Tripoli to eliminate the terrorist groups that got hold there. In turn, Sarraj ordered all military units loyal to him to gear up to defend the capital, while the armed units in the capital launched operation dubbed ‘Volcano of Rage’ to fight back. The conflict led to death of hundreds of people and destruction of vital infrastructure facilities, while thousands of Libyans were forced to flee their homes.

On December 12, Haftar announced that his troops are beginning "the decisive battle for the capital" to "free it from the terrorists." The GNA mobilized all troops loyal to it to defend Tripoli, officially appealing to Turkey for help based on a memorandum of military cooperation signed in late November. The army command has repeatedly accused Ankara of supplying arms and providing other assistance and support to Tripoli’s authorities bypassing the international embargo as well as transferring hundreds of hired guns from Syria to Libya, including ISIS terrorists.