Haftar did not sign agreement because he does not want to share power in Libya


According to a Turkish expert on international relations, Libyan renegade general Khalifa Haftar abruptly abandoned talks on a ceasefire in Libya to defend a well-thought-out battlefield strategy.

Professor Ferhat Pirinççi, an expert on international relations and foreign policy at Uludağ University, speaking to Anadolu Agency (AA) said Haftar’s reasons for moving away from talks in Moscow could be a tactical and strategic move.

“Haftar does not want to lose his advance south of Tripoli. Because technically, a possible withdrawal to the region because of the ceasefire can be understood as a loss for the Haftar forces, ”said Pirinççi.

According to him, there are also two strategic policies among the reasons for his departure. Emphasizing Haftar’s military advance on the battlefield, he said Haftar does not want to share power in Libya.

“Haftari was ready to fully conquer Tripoli with his military victories on the ground, so he did not want to be just a partner of a possible new system. He wants all his profits, ”Pirincic said.

As a second strategic step, Pirincic said, Haftar is not an independent actor in the region, so he had to convince his strategic partners, such as France, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.

“Clearly, Haftar was forced to abandon talks because of his allies, despite Russia’s efforts,” he said.

Pirincic said the approach would work against Haftar and his aggressive behavior would change perceptions of him in the international arena.

He said Russia would continue to pressure Haftar to adhere to the temporary ceasefire that began on Sunday, adding, “If Russia fails to do so, it is likely that Haftar forces will attack again.” .

This could make the Libyan National Reconciliation Government (GNA), which enjoys the recognition of the United Nations (UN), appear as the rational voice in Libya.

“Removing Haftar from the negotiating table gave some advantages to the GNA and its supporters. If the Haftar forces lose their power and position on the ground, local actors supporting the Haftar can criticize their policies and change the structure of the Haftar forces, ”said Pirinçi.

He advised Turkey to pursue a “two-branch” strategy after failed talks.

“On the one hand, Turkey should increase diplomatic pressure on Haftar by receiving more political support from Russia, Italy, Tunisia, Qatar and Algeria. On the other hand, Turkey should give more military assistance to the GNA forces to repel the Haftar forces, ”he said.

On January 12, the warring parties of the Libyan conflict announced a ceasefire in response to calls by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

On Monday, parties to the Libyan conflict gathered in Moscow to discuss a ceasefire aimed at ending hostilities in Libya and launching a political dialogue.

However, Haftar refused to sign the agreement and left the meeting after Fayez al-Sarraj, head of the GNA, signed the agreement.


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