Libya:Turkey reopens embassy in Tripoli

Turkey has reopened its embassy in Libya, becoming the second country to revive its diplomatic mission in the war-torn North African country.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Monday that Ambassador Ahmet Aydin Dogan would lead the mission in the capital, Tripoli.

It said the reopening could help Turkey rebuild Libya both economically and politically.

“The reopening of the embassy will allow Turkey to make stronger contributions to efforts to build peace and stability, as well as reconstruction in Libya,” said the statement, adding, “Turkey will continue to support the territorial integrity and national unity of brotherly Libya.”

Libya has been grappling with devastating militancy since long-time dictator Muammar Gaddafi was ousted and killed in an uprising in 2011. Turkey closed its embassy in Libya in 2014, after fighting erupted between rival militia groups over the control of Tripoli.

The oil-rich country has been politically divided between two rival groups in the west and the east, as a UN-backed unity government has also been seeking to exert its control in the capital.

Earlier this month, Italy, which has been coping with an increasing number of refugee arrivals from Libya, became the first country to reopen its embassy in Tripoli.

Reports on Monday said there was a heavy security presence near the Turkish and Italian embassies, located 600 meters apart on a road close to Tripoli’s seafront.

A bombing attack targeted the area between the two embassies on January 21, with officials blaming rival political factions in eastern Libya for the incident, which claimed the lives of two attackers.

Turkey has been running its consulate general in the western city of Misrata without interruption over the past years while its ambassador had been based in neighboring Tunisia during the embassy’s closure in Tripoli.

By Africafrique and agencies

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