Pompeo and Germany’s Maas discuss concerns over Libya mercenaries

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Germany’s Foreign Minister Heiko Maas discussed concerns about Libya in a phone call, the US State Department said on Friday night.

Both Pompeo and Maas expressed worries that arms embargoes were being broken and an increasing number of mercenaries were involved in the fighting.

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Russia was sponsoring mercenaries on the ground in Libya, in comments defending a deal brokered between Ankara and Libya’s UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) led by Fayez Serraj.

The GNA has ratified two security and maritime cooperation deals with Turkey, in a deal that includes military training, according to a draft on the Turkish parliament’s website. Turkey is due to vote on the agreement on Saturday.

Libya slid into anarchy after a 2011 armed revolt that toppled long-time dictator Moamer Gaddafi.

The oil-rich country has at least two rival administrations: the UN-backed government based in Tripoli, and the other based in the eastern city of Tobruk, which is allied with Haftar.

Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia are seen as aligned with Russia in backing Haftar, whereas Qatar is believed to support the Tripoli government, alongside Turkey.

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