The NATO member state Turkey is blocking a decision by the military alliance to support the EU Sea-Guardian mission. This is not by chance, because the EU mission is supposed to control the UN arms embargo against Libya.
However, Turkey is one of the largest military supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood regime in Tripoli. It has sent tens of thousands of mercenaries, jihadists and its own soldiers into the country and continues to flood it with state-of-the-art war technology.
The Sea-Guardian mission can only stand by and watch, because any control of the weapons transports protected by the Turkish navy is met with the threat of military force. For instance, a French frigate was detected by the fire control radar of a Turkish warship when it attempted to control a ship presumably loaded with weapons and mercenaries.
The Sea-Guardian mission is more of a paper tiger than a real restriction on arms shipments to Libya. This mission is wanted to be further weakened by Turkey’s refusal to provide NATO support. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg had said on Wednesday at a meeting of EU defense ministers in Berlin that there was no news on the subject. However, he said that they wanted to see how they could possibly cooperate with the EU operation.
The Muslim Brotherhood regime in Tripoli is one of the closest allies of the Erdoğan government. Among other things, Turkey attributes its claims to natural gas deposits in Greek territory in the Aegean Sea and the eastern Mediterranean to an agreement with the head of the regime, al-Sarraj. Libya represents an important anchor point for Turkey’s imperial ambitions.