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Ankara and Moscow call for a ceasefire in Libya from Sunday (official)

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, called for a ceasefire in Libya from Sunday 12th, following a meeting in Istanbul on Wednesday.

“We call on all parties to the conflict in Libya to stop hostilities at 00:00 on January 12 and declare a permanent ceasefire,” a statement from the Turkish presidency said.

The two presidents also urged the various parties to “sit immediately at the negotiating table in order to put an end to the suffering of the Libyan people.”

Turkey announced on Sunday that it had begun sending soldiers to Libya in support of the government of national reconciliation, while the forces of Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar continued their offensive in an attempt to control Tripoli.

Despite Moscow’s denial, Ankara confirms that 2,500 Russian mercenaries are fighting alongside Haftar’s forces, which are also backed by the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

On Wednesday, Erdogan and Putin also expressed their support for an international conference due in January in Berlin aimed at finding a solution that would pave the way for reviving the political process in Libya under the auspices of the United Nations.

The two presidents held talks on the sidelines of the inauguration of the “Turkish Stream” pipeline to transport Russian gas to Turkey, Europe.

They also discussed the escalation of tension between Tehran and Washington after the assassination of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani on Friday in an American strike in Baghdad.

“We reaffirm our commitment to defuse tension in the region and call on all parties to exercise restraint, exercise wisdom and prioritize diplomacy,” the two presidents said in a joint statement.

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