The Libyan National Army has called on the United Nations Security Council to launch an immediate investigation into what it says are two shipments of military hardware from Turkey to the North African country.
The army, in a statement released late on Wednesday, voiced deep concern over the arrival of shipments, carrying various types of rifles and munitions, at the western Libyan port city of al-Khoms on Monday and Tuesday.
“The ammunition in those shipments included more than 4.2 million bullets, enough to kill nearly 80 percent of the Libyan people, as well as pistols and rifles with their accessories, including silencers used for assassinations. This is a proof that the purpose (of those arms) is to be used for terrorist operations in the Libyan territories,” the statement said.
It added, “The general command of the army demands the UN Security Council, the United Nations, and the United Nations Mission in Libya to condemn the Turkish Republic and start an immediate investigation into it.”
Turkish authorities have not yet commented on the Libyan statement.
Reports about Turkey’s role in the Libyan conflict began to emerge in January 2013, when Turkish-language newspaper Hurriyet reported that Greek authorities had found Turkish weapons on a ship heading to Libya, after it stopped in Greece due to bad weather.
In December 2013, Egyptian media outlets reported that the Egyptian Customs Authority had monitored four containers full of arms coming from Turkey and believed to be heading to Libyan militants.
In August 2014, Libyan strongman Khalifa Haftar ordered his forces to shell a ship loaded with weapons coming from Turkey, and heading towards the Libyan port of Derna.
A Libyan army official said in January 2015 that both Turkey and Qatar were supplying the “Dawn of Libya” militant group with arms through Sudan, in flagrant violation of the UN arms embargo imposed on Libya since 2011.
Moreover, Turkey has been accused of harboring Takfiri terrorists in Libya.
In January 2017, according to Libyan media, al-Qaeda-linked Ansar al-Sharia militant group said its leader Mohammed al-Zahawi had died at a Turkish hospital, where he was receiving treatment for “an injury sustained in the battles of Benghazi.” His body was sent back to the northwestern Libyan city of Misrata for burial, the reports said.