WASHINGTON

Turkey is adamantly opposed to Libya’s partition, be it in principle or by law, Turkey’s presidential spokesman has said.

“We are absolutely against the breaking up of Libya, whether in reality, or on the map, or politically or geographically,” Ibrahim Kalin said during an interview with London-based CNN International. “That will be a devastating scenario. We have seen similar cases in Iraq, in Syria, in other places. We should draw lessons from that.”

Libya has been mired in strife since NATO operations led to the overthrow of former strongman Muammar Gadaffi in 2011.

The country’s new government was founded four years later in 2015 under a UN-led agreement, but efforts for a long-term political settlement have so far failed due to a military offensive by renegade general Khalifa Haftar’s forces.

Since April 2019, Haftar’s forces have launched attacks on the Libyan capital of Tripoli and other parts of northwestern Libya, resulting in more than 1,000 deaths, including civilians. Haftar has the support of the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Russia while the UN-recognized government is backed by Turkey.

The Libyan government has recently achieved significant victories against Haftar, pushing his forces out of Tripoli and the strategic city of Tarhuna.

Kalin said the Turkish government would continue to support the UN-recognized Government of National Accord, accusing Haftar of sowing “havoc” in Libya.

“He has tried to push his way, and he is trying to divide Libya, or take control of Libya with no legitimacy at all,” he said, adding Haftar has “violated every single agreement, ceasefire, or peace process over the last two years.”

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