In what many observers see as an effort to exert substantial control over the Mediterranean in view of restoring the former glory of the Ottoman Caliphate, Turkey has begun sending Syrian mercenaries to Libya to bolster the UN-backed government there against General Khalifa Haftar and his rebels.
MPs in Turkey passed a bill approving the deployment of troops to Libya last Thursday in support of the embattled UN-backed government there, shoring up a relationship that experts say is a consolidation of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's idea of a 'greater Turkey' resembling the Ottoman Empire.
The United States and Russia both said Thursday they could not support a United Nations Security Council resolution calling for a cease-fire in Libya at this time, diplomats said, as mortar bombs crashed down on a suburb of the Libyan capital, Tripoli.
Leaders meeting in Tunisia for the annual Arab League summit on Sunday were united in their condemnation of Trump administration policies seen as unfairly biased toward Israel but divided on a host of other issues, including whether to readmit founding member Syria.
Arab League Secretary-General Ahmed Abu al-Gheith caused a stir when he stated during a recent television interview that the priority of the Palestinian cause – resisting Israel and pushing for a Palestinian state – has been somewhat 'reduced,' before clarifying that 'it is still a pressing circumstance that we [Arab states] must strive to resist.'
The Islamic State has lost the vast majority of physical territory it once held, but fully defeating the terrorist group and rooting out sleeper cells that have spread across the Middle East and Africa 'could take years,' the Defense Department inspector general said in a sweeping report Monday that suggests final victory remains far off.
Iran’s loss may be Libya’s gain. The prospect that U.S. sanctions will drastically curb Tehran’s oil exports is feeding interest in Libya’s oil reserves and has even sparked movement toward economic and political reform in one of the region’s most unstable states.