The interests of Moscow and Ankara crossed again — this time in Libya, where they seem to have tried to “replay” the battle for the Syrian Idlib.
EU high representative for foreign Affairs and security policy Josep Borrell not so long ago called on the international community, even against the background of coronavirus not to forget about the events in Libya. European politician was more than right. News about the pandemic has overshadowed all the rest, including about fierce battles that last two weeks going in Libya between forces loyal to the Government of national unity (GNU), headed by Faiz by Sarraj and the troops of General Khalifa the Haftarot, the commander of the Libyan national army (LNA). The struggle between these two leaders and the controlled groups in the oil-rich North African country is already not the first year. However, in recent days it has deteriorated.
The LDF Haftorah, supported by Russia, began the assault on the capital Tripoli, controlled STUMP Caraga, on the side which speaks, among others, Turkey with its economic interests in the Mediterranean.
According to the latest reports, Haftar was defeated under the walls of the Libyan capital, a serious defeat and not the last role was played by delivered to a Government of national unity of the Turkish drones, destroys the heavy equipment of troops of the LNA.
All this, at least superficially, resembles not so long ago the events that unfolded in February and March this year in Syria, where fierce battle for the Idlib province came together Pro-Russian and Pro-Turkish formation. There, as you know, the troops of President Bashar al-Assad suffered a heavy defeat from the Turkish army and her allied armed groups of the Syrian opposition.
Recall that shortly before these events in Idlib Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that in Libya there are hundreds of Russian mercenaries, and that Ankara is absolutely unacceptable. The Kremlin these statements by Turkish leaders have denied and even tried urgently to invite the two leaders, opposing the Libyan conflict, in Moscow, but negotiations in the Russian capital they got off.
It seems that the Russian-Turkish confrontation spread from Syria to Libya. Accordingly, the question arises — how in this North African country is probably the same clash between Pro-Russian and Pro-Turkish (and Russian and Turkish) forces, as it took place in February — March in Syria?
An expert on the Middle East Mikhail Magid believes that the Russian-Turkish confrontation simultaneously covered, and Syria, and Libya. And Libya, in his opinion, “even more important for Moscow and Ankara.” First, he recalls, “Libya is a huge oil reserves, comparable with what we have in Syria. Secondly, it is the Maritime gateway to Europe for refugees from Africa. Who controls Libya, he gets additional leverage to blackmail Europe by threatening to open the valve for the refugees.” At the same time, the expert believes, “the probability of direct collision (Russia and Turkey) is small, but it guarantees that there will not be killed Russian mercenaries, no.”
Commenting on the recent fighting in Libya, Magid notes the significant role of the Turkish technique in the success of the STUMP, and in particular drones. According to him, this offensive forces the STUMP led to a major defeat of the LDF and its commander Khalifa the Haftarot. “Note that he played a role and the factor of amazinghow-ibadi. We are talking about the Berbers of Libya professing a particular form of Islam, ibadism. Their units joined the operations of the NTC”.
“The most important factor probably was the deployment in Libya of the Turkish drones that are fighting on the side of the NTC and destroy the formation of the Haftarot exactly the same as in Syria, they have caused huge losses to the forces of Assad,” notes Magid. “However not all so is simple, — the expert continues. — In contrast to Assad, the Haftarot and the LDF is also a good combat drones (they put the UAE), so PNS are serious losses. However, Turkish drones “Bayraktar” proved effective, eliminating heavy equipment and the headquarters of the Haftarot in Tripoli. At the same time there are present, the Turkish air force and Navy, the latter had already opened fire on the forces of the Haftarah”.
In addition, the expert said, “Turkey is attracted to the fighting of the Syrian anti-Assad militants. Perhaps Ankara has taken to the conflict zone several hundred to two thousand soldiers. Conflict internationalizarea — Assad is trying to mend relations with the Haftarot and already discussed sending to his aid proasadovskih militants”.
To some extent, says Magid, is a continuation of the war that we saw in February and March of this year in Syria. “Paradoxically, he said, but neither Russia, nor Turkey has no desire to get involved in direct conflict. Among countries there is extensive trade (its turnover of about 30 billion dollars), and they’d rather divide Libya and Syria, than to fight there. But the ambitions of the parties and those they support, led to protracted, costly and dangerous conflict, which unfolded within the context of an expanding pandemic and the economic crisis in Turkey and Russia.”
“Meanwhile, high-precision bombs and missiles, shells and expensive drones, it — unbuilt somewhere hospitals and academic medical centers, untrained somewhere doctors, outstanding someone benefits that are unavailable for some drugs and tools. Therefore, those ordinary people who support their government in such wars, it would be worthwhile to think hard. It may well be that they may become their victims. If not direct, then indirect,” said Magid.
“Of course, the conflicts in Libya and Syria is interconnected, but to talk about what is happening in Libya Russian-Turkish confrontation, it must be hard, because there are several other rules,” in turn, said the expert of the Russian Council on international Affairs Kirill Semenov. According to him, “in Syria, and Libya, Russia and Turkey are trying to divide spheres of interest and influence on those or other forces in these countries.”
At the same time, the expert says that “in itself, the involvement of Russia in the Libyan conflict is very different from the Syrian.” “If we can speak about unequivocal support of Bashar al-Assad in Libya, Moscow does not support the Haftarot, although, as we all know, it is more it assists. However, officially it is not. Russia refuses to recognize its role in supporting the LDF”, he explained.
About the same, reminds Semyonov, said the President, noting that in Libya there are no Russian mercenaries. “Most likely, the network, because certain groups of Russian mercenaries acting in the country, Haftarot pay out the money received from its other allies,” — said the expert.
Of course, in such hands, says Semenov, “most likely, and comes to direct clashes between Russian mercenaries and those who were sent to Turkey. Of course, such clashes occur — and those and others are on the same front.”
You also need to take into account the fact that Russia for the Haftarot is not on the first place among the States that support him, continued Semenov. According to him, among these countries can be called the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, France, Egypt.
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