Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told local state broadcaster TRT Haber that the GNA needs to take back Sirte, the hometown of longtime and late ruler Muammar Gaddafi, and the Jufra airbase before it inks a ceasefire deal with rebel General Khalifa Haftar, who is backed by Egypt, Russia, UAE and France.
GNA forces are preparing to assault Sirte but Russia and Egypt have warned that the coastal city is a red line.
The city, seized this year by Haftar’s forces, is reportedly hosting foreign mercenaries recruited by Moscow-based Wagner Group, a private security company said to be closed to Russian President Vladmir Putin.
Haftar saw his military push to take over capital Tripoli derailed after Turkey entered the Libyan chess game through its military support to GNA forces.
Egypt, following Haftar’s debacle, quickly proposed a ceasefire that GNA refused to observe.