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Turkey negotiating mass transfer of jihadists towards Libya

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has entered into a military alliance with the Libyan "government of national accord" (GNA), chaired by Fayez Al-Sarraj, based in Tripoli and backed by the United Nations. Erdoğan has already arranged for the delivery of armored vehicles and drones, but has yet to deploy regular troops.

In Ankara, the Grand National Assembly is expected imminently to authorize the Turkish army to send regular soldiers to Libya.

At the same time, however, the Turkish army is keeping out of Idlib (Syria) where the jihadists are under attack by the Syrian Arab army, in coordination with the Russian air force, and where two Turkish observation posts have been hemmed in by the Syrian Arab army. Tens of thousands of jihadists have been moving into Turkey.

On 25 December 2019, President Erdoğan paid a spur-of-the-moment visit to Tunisia. He was notably flanked by Hakan Fidan, the head of Turkey’s national intelligence (Millî İstihbarat Teşkilatı), as well as by his Foreign Affairs and Defense Ministers. The delegation was received by Tunisia’s President Kaïs Saïed, a jurist, who is supported by the Muslim Brotherhood. He gave his Turkish counterpart the green light to use the airport and the port of Djerba for the mass transfer of jihadists to Tripoli and Misrata.

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