Kramp-karrenbauer defends federal army control off libya

Kramp-karrenbauer defends federal army control off libya

Defense minister annegret kramp-karrenbauer has defended the control of a turkish cargo ship by the german armed forces as part of the eu mission against arms smuggling to libya.

"The german soldiers (acted) completely correctly," the CDU leader said on tuesday at a political forum of the korber foundation in berlin. "They have done what is required of them within the framework of the european mandate "irini."Turkish defense minister hulusi akar, on the other hand, reiterated on tuesday that his country considers the action illegal.

The dispute arose over the deployment of the "irini" mission, which is supposed to stop arms shipments to the war-torn country of libya. During the operation of the german frigate "hamburg" on sunday evening, the soldiers boarded a suspicious cargo ship about 200 kilometers north of the libyan city of bengasi to inspect the cargo, according to the mission command. A few hours later, however, turkey, the state whose flag the ship was flying, vetoed the search of the container freighter. The german soldiers then had to abort the mission.

Turkey had protested against the inspection, which ankara said was "carried out without authorization and with the use of force". Several turkish dailies spoke of "piracy" on tuesday. The opposition newspaper "sozcu" even portrayed merkel as a pirate.

An EU spokesman confirmed to the german press agency that on monday evening the head of the EU delegation in ankara was summoned to the auben ministry. He was received by the deputy minister of agriculture together with heads of representations from other EU member states. The latter had then handed over a diplomatic note in which he had complained about the inspection carried out in the framework of the EU operation irini. The EU ambassador then explained the procedure of the operation once again.

In an official press statement, it was stated that there was sufficient reason to believe that the controlled ship could have violated the UN arms embargo against libya. The german soldiers had acted in a highly professional manner and had inspected the ship in accordance with internationally agreed procedures, including NATO procedures. The EU reminded turkey of UN resolution 2292 of 2016, which calls on flag states to cooperate in the inspection of suspicious vessels.

UN spokesman stephane dujarric explained that the united nations did not have their own findings on the incident. Nevertheless, it is of the utmost importance that all member states respect the arms embargo against libya.

The mission to control the arms embargo was launched by the EU because of the civil war that has been raging in libya since the fall of long-time ruler muammar al-gaddafi in 2011. The government forces are supported by turkey, their opponent, general chalifa haftar, by agypt, jordan, the united arab emirates and russia.