The Libyan National Army (LNA) forces led by commander Khalifa Haftar will ban any commercial flights from Libya to Turkey and Turkish ships from docking in the country.

Reuters quoted LNA spokesman Ahmed Mismari as saying on Friday.

Ankara supports the internationally recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli.

The eastern-based LNA, which started a campaign three months ago to seize Tripoli. And supported by Turkey’s regional rivals Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and other Gulf states.

Accuses Turkey of funding and arming Islamist factions in Libya fighting on the side of the GNA.

Treated as Hostile

Any aircraft arriving from Turkey attempting to land in the capital Tripoli would be treated as hostile, Reuters quoted Mismari as saying. The same would apply to Turkish ships docking at Libyan ports, according to the spokesman.

Also Mismari said LNA forces would attack any Turkish military presence, without elaborating.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said he had ”no information” on the statement. Issued by Mismari at a G-20 summit press conference in Osaki, Japan on Saturday.

”I have no information on who such an order was given by. Which Turkish ships were ordered to be attacked?” Erdoğan said.

LNA failed to take Tripoli

The LNA has failed to take Tripoli but it commands air superiority and has several times attacked Tripoli’s functioning airport.

The eastern-based government said early this month. That its fighter jets had brought down a Turkish drone which had been landing on the runway of Mitiga airbase.

Mismari also said his forces had lost 43 soldiers in the battle over the town of Gharyan which the Tripoli forces took on Wednesday

Gharyan was the main forward base for the LNA where troops, weapons, and ammunition arrived. The LNA began its Tripoli campaign there.

The LNA still holds the town of Tarhouna southeast of Tripoli, its second main position in the campaign.

Haftar’s Side

Haftar and his backers say they are trying to free the capital from militias. Which they blame for destabilizing Libya since the fall of Muammar Gaddafi in a NATO-backed uprising in 2011.

He also critics accuse him of trying to seize power through force and deepening conflict between factions based in the east and west of the sprawling North African country. And offensive has upended United Nations-led plans to stabilize Libya after years of conflict that have left the oil-rich nation divided and caused living standards to plummet.

The conflict risks disrupting oil production, creating a vacuum to be exploited by militants and prompting more migrants to leave for Italy by boat.



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