France President Emmanuel Macron has criticised Turkey for the ‘criminal’ roles it is playing in Libya.
Libya has been in turmoil since 2011 when a NATO-backed uprising toppled leader Muammar Gaddafi, who was later killed.
The country has =since been split between rival administrations in the east and the west, each backed by armed groups and different foreign governments.
Speaking on Turkey’s open support for the internationally recognised government based in Tripoli, Macron described it as “criminal”.
“I think it is a historic and criminal responsibility for a country which claims to be a NATO member,” he said.
Turkey has been providing air support, weapons, and allied fighters from Syria to help the internationally recognised government based in Tripoli repel a 14-month assault by renegade eastern commander Khalifa Haftar.
Turkey had in recent time knocked France over its role in the conflict saying Paris aims to restore “old colonial rule” in the North African country.
“Due to the support it has given to illegitimate structures for years, France has an important responsibility in dragging Libya into chaos,” foreign ministry spokesman Hami Aksoy said.
“The people of Libya will never forget the damage France has inflicted on this country.”
Macron denied backing Haftar’s east-based forces, saying France is in favour of finding a “political solution”.
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