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Turkey slams Greece for hosting Libya's Haftar

January 19, 2020 at 3:15 pm

Inviting Libyan renegade General Khalifa Haftar to Greece and stressing the Greek agenda in the Mediterranean are both “futile efforts” to derail the push for peace in Libya, said Turkey’s foreign minister on Saturday.

“The Greek-Greek Cypriot duo extorts the rights of neighboring countries with their maximalist claims in the Eastern Mediterranean,” said a statement by Mevlut Cavusoglu.

“Trying to legitimise these claims by taking advantage of the EU harms peace and stability in the region,” he added.

Haftar visited Greece and met with top Greek officials on Friday, ahead of Sunday’s conference on Libya in Berlin.

Haftar also had a one-to-one meeting with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias, who said afterwards that Haftar agreed the treaties signed between Turkey and Libya’s UN-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) need to be cancelled.

Read: Haftar and Sarraj to participate in Berlin Conference, Greece upset

Cavusoglu also decried Athens’ handling of issues with Libya.

The two pacts Turkey “signed with the legitimate government in Libya have alarmed Greece. Instead of dialogue, they severed diplomatic relations with the legitimate government. Unfortunately, they act with the understanding that ‘The enemy of my enemy is my friend’,” he wrote.

“Actually behind this, there are efforts to impose maritime jurisdiction claims on Libya. In the past years, they have set up oil and gas license areas to the south of Crete in a way that usurps the rights and interests of Libya. When faced with this situation, the legitimate government of Libya signed a memorandum of understanding with us to protect their rights,” he explained.

Greece’s futile efforts are “in vain,” he added.

Read: Erdogan calls on Europe to support Turkey’s moves in Libya