ANKARA

Turkey on Tuesday “strongly” condemned an attempted desecration of the Turkish flag in Tobruk, Libya by supporters of putschist Gen. Khalifa Haftar, calling it a “heinous act.”

“We strongly condemn the ugly action against our flag in front of the temporary building of the House of Representatives during the budget negotiations held on 5 July 2021 in Tobruk, Libya,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Tanju Bilgic said in a statement.

“Immediately after learning of the heinous act, our Tripoli Embassy made the necessary written and verbal initiatives before the Libyan Ministry of Foreign Affairs and demanded that necessary measures be taken to prevent such provocations and to prevent similar incidents from recurring,” Bilgic continued.

He said the action was clearly meant to target Turkish-Libyan fellowship.

“This attack on our flag, which represents our independence and sacred values, will never achieve its goal,” he said, adding that the necessary response will be given by “the friendly and brotherly Libyan people before anyone else.”

On Monday, supporters of Haftar – who waged a multi-year war against the UN-recognized Libyan government – attempted a provocation by laying Turkish flags on the road where Libyan Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dibeybe’s convoy would pass during his visit to Tobruk.

Under a bilateral 2019 security agreement, Turkey provided military aid to help the legitimate Libyan government push back Haftar’s attacks.

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