Turkey recognizes Libya rebels, promises more aid

The Associated Press reports:

Turkey’s foreign minister recognized Libya’s rebel leaders as the country’s legitimate representatives and promised them an additional $200 million in aid during a visit Sunday.

The visit by Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu marked Turkey’s strongest show of support yet for the opposition forces trying to out Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.

Turkey, a regional power, initially balked at the idea of military action in Libya and Turkish companies were involved in Libyan construction projects worth billions of dollars before the outbreak of an anti-Gadhafi uprising in February.

The revolt has turned into a protracted, largely deadlocked armed conflict, in which the rebels control Libya’s eastern third, while Gadhafi clings to power in the west, but has been unable to crush pockets of resistance there. As a NATO member, Turkey is now supporting the alliance’s airstrikes against targets linked to the Gadhafi regime.

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