Turkish troops are only in Libya for education and training purposes, said Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu at the World Economic Forum in Davos on Wednesday.
“Our personnel is there for training and education, nothing else,” he said. Turkey has sent troops to Libya to support the UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA), which has been accused of accomodating extremist groups.
Cavusoglu also blamed Libyan commander Khalifa Haftar for allegedly undermining efforts to reach a truce in Libya's long-standing conflict.
Libya is currently in turmoil, with oil output grounding to a halt after the failure of the recent conference in Berlin, which sought to bring together the GNA's Prime Minister Fayyez al-Sarraj with rival commander Haftar to sign a peace treaty.
“In Berlin, we gathered together with all the actors including P5 countries, and we all committed there for a sustainable truce or ceasefire. Al-Sarraj also did, but [Libyan commander Khalifa] Haftar didn’t make any announcement,” he said.
When prompted that Turkey and Russia were on different sides in Syria and Libya, Cavusoglu said that it shows Turkey's capacity to work together with other actors, but that Turkey is opposed to Russia in other conflicts including Georgia and Ukraine.
Cavusoglu was speaking at the Geopolitical Outlook: The Middle East and North Africa panel alongside the Omani foreign minister and Jordanian prime minister.