Turkey criticizes Macron’s call to withdraw from Libya – Middle East Monitor



France does not have the right to comment on Turkey’s military presence in Libya, which is part of Ankara’s agreement with the legitimate Libyan government, the Turkish foreign minister said on Wednesday. Anadolu News Agency reports.

In a severe rebuke to Emmanuel Macron, Mevlut Cavusoglu said the French president’s recent call for the withdrawal of Turkish and Russian troops from Libya was “disrespectful to the sovereignty of Turkey and Libya”.

“We have an agreement with the legitimate government of Libya. France does not have the right to speak out on this issue,” he told reporters in the Turkish capital, Ankara.

“Such issues can only be discussed by sovereign states that are parties to an agreement,” he added.

“France has an old habit of commenting on what others are doing. For Turkey, France or any other country is irrelevant in this matter; we are only talking about Libya,” Cavusoglu said.

Turkey supports Azerbaijan against Armenia’s “terrorist attacks”

Cavusoglu reaffirmed Turkey’s support for Azerbaijan in its conflict with Armenia, condemning Armenia’s recent “terrorist attacks” on Azerbaijani territories.

“Azerbaijan is not and never will be alone,” Turkish Foreign Minister said at a joint press conference in Ankara with his Bahraini counterpart Abdullatif bin Rashid Al-Zayani.

He was responding to a question about an Armenian attack that killed 10 Azerbaijani soldiers and injured seven others earlier this week.

The Azerbaijani Defense Ministry also accused the Armenian forces of carrying out “large-scale provocations” in the areas of Kalbajar and Lachin.

OPINION: Are the Libyan people ready to decide their future?

Cavusoglu called on Armenia to understand that such provocations “are futile and will not be worth anything”.

He criticized Armenia for pursuing an antagonistic policy at a time when Baku and Ankara are keen to work for the stability and development of the region.

“We would like to turn a new leaf and normalize our relations (with Armenia), but look at what Armenia continues to do despite our overtures,” he said.

Relations with Bahrain

Regarding Turkey’s relations with Bahrain, Cavusoglu said the two countries have shown “a common will to revitalize and revitalize their relations”.

He said talks with the Bahraini foreign minister and his delegation have been “fruitful”, with both sides agreeing on the need for more regular engagement and bilateral visits.

Turkey and Bahrain will maintain open channels of dialogue on all issues, according to Cavusoglu.

Al-Zayani also referred to the “good relations between the two friendly countries”, saying that the leader of Bahrain had sent a letter to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, acknowledging the “strong friendship” of their nations.

He said regional developments and their potential impact on Turkey and Bahrain, as well as possible solutions, were discussed during his meetings in Ankara.

Turkey and Bahrain are keen to strengthen bilateral cooperation in all sectors, he added.

On the issue of visas for Turkish citizens, Al-Zayani said Bahrain is working to improve its current mechanism and will ensure that “our brothers in Turkey have priority in the new system”.

OPINION: Libya’s Stabilization Conference was all talk and little substance

The Bahraini foreign minister also shared details of the Asian Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) virtual ministerial meeting he attended with Cavusoglu on Wednesday.

He said the participants “reiterated the importance of the ACD Forum to increase cooperation among all Asian countries and strengthen efforts to achieve their common goals and objectives.”

The meeting saw the chairmanship of the group, held by Turkey since September 2019, ceded to Bahrain.

The ACD has also declared the central province of Nevsehir – the gateway to Turkey’s scenic Cappadocia region – its tourism capital for 2022, the year that marks the group’s 20th anniversary.


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