ANKARA

Turkey’s foreign minister held a phone conversation with his Italian counterpart on Friday, according to the diplomatic sources.

Mevlut Cavusoglu and Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio discussed matters related to Libya and the Eastern Mediterranean.

Tensions have recently escalated over the issue of energy exploration in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Greece has disputed Turkey’s energy exploration in the region, trying to box in Turkish maritime territory based on small islands near the Turkish coast. French President Emmanuel Macron has interceded in support of Athens, despite lacking any Eastern Mediterranean coastline.

Turkey – the country with the longest coastline on the Mediterranean – has sent out drill ships to explore for energy on its continental shelf, saying that both Turkey and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) have rights in the region.

In order to reduce tensions, Turkey has called for dialogue to ensure fair sharing of resources.

Libya’s Government of National Accord, founded in 2015 under a UN-led agreement in the wake of the ouster of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, has faced a number of challenges, including attacks by warlord Khalifa Haftar.

In recent months, however, it has turned the tide against Haftar’s forces.

Turkey supports the internationally recognized government based in the capital Tripoli and a non-military resolution of the crisis.

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