Turkey slams Bahrain over remarks on defense minister

Alaturka Amerika ABD Haberleri

By Burak Bir

ANKARA (AA) – Turkey on Monday denounced a recent statement by Bahrain’s Foreign Ministry which criticized remarks made by Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar.

"The statement by Bahrain’s Foreign Ministry on National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar's response to questions during an interview with Al Jazeera TV broadcast on July 31 does not reflect the truth," the ministry said in a statement.

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Akar told at Al Jazeera on Friday that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has committed malicious acts in Syria and Libya and the UAE will be held accountable at the right place and time.

On Sunday, Bahrain’s Foreign Ministry described Akar's statement as "hostile" and an "unacceptable provocation."

"It is an unfortunate and futile effort to characterize the destabilizing activities carried out by the Abu Dhabi administration by violating the universal rules and moral values in regions such as Syria, Libya, Yemen and the Horn of Africa as constructive and to reflect our legitimate reaction to these activities as if against our Arab brothers," the ministry said.

"Arab people are our friends and our brothers," it stressed.

Referring to countries which support warlord Khalifa Haftar in Libya, the ministry said regional peace, stability and security can only be defended by standing with law and legitimacy, not with putschists

Noting that relations between Turkey and Libya date back to over 500 years, it said Turkey acts with the principle of "Libya is Libyan" and Turkey's aim is an independent and sovereign Libya led by the UN-recognized government.

Turkey will decisively continue to provide military training, assistance and consulting to the Libyan government, it added.

Libya has been torn by civil war since the ouster of late ruler Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. The government was founded in 2015 under a UN-led agreement, but efforts for a long-term political settlement failed due to a military offensive by forces loyal to Haftar.

The UN recognizes the government headed by Fayez al-Sarraj as the country's legitimate authority.

Tripoli has battled Haftar’s militias since April 2019 in a conflict that has taken more than 1,000 lives.

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