15:25 GMT30 May 2020
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    CAIRO (Sputnik) - The presence of the Turkish armed forces in Libya has balanced out the situation outside of Tripoli, Mohamed Taher Siala, the foreign minister of the Government of National Accord (GNA), said.

    According to him, Turkey's military presence in the country is aimed to protect civilians.

    "The Turkish presence has balanced out the situation on the ground ... if not for the current presence of Turkey in Libya, the Government of National Accord would not be able to hold its current positions," the minister said as quoted by Akhbar Libya24 website.

    After the ouster and assassination of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, the country was plunged into a brutal civil war. Today, Libya is divided between two centers of power — an elected parliament in the country's east, supported by the Libyan National Army (LNA), led by Khalifa Haftar, and the UN-backed Libyan Government of National Accord in the west, headed by Fayez Sarraj.

    On December 12, Haftar announced the beginning of a decisive battle in his campaign to capture Tripoli, which has been underway since last April and has resulted in vicious fighting in the city's outskirts. The GNA asked Ankara to provide military support against the LNA offensive.

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