Turkey's Erdogan makes surprise visit to Tunisia

Thank you for reading the news about Turkey's Erdogan makes surprise visit to Tunisia and now with the details

Aden - Yasmine El Tohamy - Erdogan's Christmas Day visit comes as Mediterranean countries stand divided on Turkey's controversial maritime delimitation deal with Tunisia's neighbour Libya, which expanded Turkey's claims over a large gas-rich area.

Turkey has been sharply criticised over the November military deal with Libya's internationally recognised government, namely by Greece, which says the maritime agreement does not take into account the island of Crete.

President Erdogan's meeting with Tunisian President Kais Saied, the first by a head of state since he was elected in the autumn, could be an attempt to drum up support from other countries in the region. 

Erdogan was accompanied by his foreign and defence ministers, and his intelligence chief, a statement by his office said. 

There have been

on social media that an airplane belonging to Libyan General Khalifa Haftar also landed in Tunisia on Wednesday.

Greece's Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias visited eastern Libya's Benghazi on Sunday, meeting representatives of strongman Khalifa Haftar's administration amid tensions with Turkey

Turkey supports Libya's UN-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) based in Tripoli in the struggle against eastern Libyan strongman Haftar.

General Haftar is backed by Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, countries with whom Turkey has tense or limited relations.

President Erdogan on Sunday vowed Turkey would increase military support to Libya if necessary, and evaluate all options.

His comments come a day after the Turkish parliament ratified a security and military cooperation deal signed between Ankara and Tripoli last month.

"We will evaluate all kinds of military support including ground, marine and air options if necessary," Erdogan said during a speech in the northwestern province of Kocaeli.


Although Erdogan has said Turkey is willing to send troops to Libya, the government must seek a separate mandate from the Turkish parliament to send forces to fight there.

Forces loyal to Haftar said on Saturday they had seized a Turkish ship to search its cargo, but Ankara has made no official comment on the claim. 

Read more: Turkish-Libyan alliance in eastern Mediterranean: A game changer?

Libya has been in turmoil since a civil war in 2011 toppled Muammar Gaddafi, who was later killed. In the chaos that followed, the country was divided, with a weak UN-supported administration in Tripoli overseeing the country's west and a rival government in the east aligned General Haftar's Libyan National Army.

Each side is supported by an array of militias and foreign governments. Since April, forces loyal to eastern-based Haftar have been fighting to seize the capital Tripoli.

Agencies contributed to this report.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram to stay connected

These were the details of the news Turkey's Erdogan makes surprise visit to Tunisia for this day. We hope that we have succeeded by giving you the full details and information. To follow all our news, you can subscribe to the alerts system or to one of our different systems to provide you with all that is new.

It is also worth noting that the original news has been published and is available at The New Arab and the editorial team at AlKhaleej Today has confirmed it and it has been modified, and it may have been completely transferred or quoted from it and you can read and follow this news from its main source.

NEXT Israeli media: Saudi Arabia allows Israel to use its airspace to...