Turkey criticizes Germany for enforcing Libya arms embargo

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Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu on Thursday criticized Germany’s participation in a European Union mission supervising an international weapon’s embargo on Libya.

Cavusoglu was in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, for talks with, Fayez al-Sarraj, the head of UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA). Turkey is one of the GNA’s strongest supporters.

In comments to Turkish media following the meeting, Cavusoglu accused Berlin of compromising its neutrality in the Libyan conflict after Germany sent a frigate Tuesday carrying 250 soldiers to participate in the EU’s “Irini” mission.

See also: German frigate ‘Hamburg’ leaves for the Mediterranean to participate in Operation Irini

Irini was launched in May to stop weapons from reaching Libya, which is embroiled in a power struggle between the GNA and forces loyal to eastern Libyan military strongman Khalifa Haftar.

“Irini is a biased operation … Germany is the host of the Berlin conference; therefore it needs to be neutral and objective,” Cavusoglu told Turkish state news agency Anadolu.

In January, Germany hosted an international conference on the Libyan conflictin Berlin, during which several countries agreed to uphold an arms embargo.

Cavusoglu said that Germany’s participation in Irini would make the Berlin conference “illegitimate.”

“If it [Germany] takes part in a biased operation, it will lose its impartiality,” Cavusoglu said, adding Berlin’s involvement makes the situation in Libya “more complicated.”

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