Is political stability possible in Libya?


After World War II exhausted the power of European countries, the colonized nations succeeded in gaining their independence. Immediately after independence, however, dictators seized political power in many of these countries, especially in Arab countries like Egypt and Saudi Arabia. In other words, the Arab nations which gained their independence after years of bitter struggles finally surrendered to the Western colonialist empire via the hands of Arab dictators. Therefore, the Arab Spring began as a wave of hope for all Arab nations.

Yet Western powers have been reluctant to support the democratic claims of Arab nations for fear of losing their allies, the longtime Arab dictators. Eventually, the Arab Spring turned into winter. A military dictatorship was established in Egypt with the support of Western “democratic” powers, while Syria was embroiled in a decade-long civil war, as Syrian lands became a battleground for international competition between world and regional powers.

The Arab Spring has also brought political instability in Libya. The government of Muammar Gaddafi, which ruled the country alone for more than 40 years, was overthrown in 2011. France was heavily involved in this process to the point that it initiated the air assault in Libya without consultation with the UN.

Although the process of democratic elections began immediately after the fall of Gaddafi, the division of Libya could not be prevented. Political power has since been divided between two rival governments: the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA), which is recognized by the UN as the legitimate government in Libya, and the Tobruk-based House of Representatives, supported by the army of putschist Gen Khalifa Haftar.

At the same time, international competition has imposed itself on the great natural gas reserves of the Mediterranean. A number of countries ranging from Israel, Greece, Egypt, Turkey, southern and northern Cyprus to Libya, Lebanon and Syria have been involved in a competition to determine maritime jurisdiction. .

By cooperating with Israel, Egypt and southern Cyprus, Greece has carved out the lion’s share of the Mediterranean’s natural gas reserves. However, when Turkey signed a maritime agreement with the legitimate government of Libya, the balance of power was restructured in the Mediterranean.

Turkey’s support for the Tripoli-based GNA also shifted the balance of power in Libya in favor of the legitimate government, which was under constant threat from Haftar’s forces. Although Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates aspire to get involved in the process by siding with the bloc of Greece, Israel and Egypt, Turkey’s support for the legitimate government in Libya has considerably weakened the position of Haftar’s forces both internally and internationally. .

Therefore, Turkey’s involvement in the Libyan crisis brings political stability to Libya and strengthens the prospects for peace in the country. Meanwhile, Turkey’s initiatives in the Mediterranean provide economic and political gains for both Libya and Turkey. Without a doubt, Turkey is a regional power which continues to increase its strength.

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