ANKARA – Turkey considers it important that Libya‘s integrity, sovereignty, independence, and political unity are protected, the county’s foreign minister said on Monday.

“We attach importance to preservation of Libya’s integrity, sovereignty, independence, and political unity,” Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said at a news conference alongside his Libyan counterpart Najla Mangouch in Tripoli.

He reiterated that Turkey has always stood by Libyan people and their legitimate governments during their difficult times.

“In the face of the attacks on Tripoli, the legitimate government of Libya invited some countries, including us. Only Turkey replied in the affirmative to this call,” Çavuşoğlu said.

He also stated that Turkey‘s support for Libya under the deal on security and military cooperation prevented a civil war and human tragedy.

The two top diplomats, Çavuşoğlu said, addressed economic cooperation, investments in Libya and bilateral trade relations, and discussed the return of the Turkish private sector to Libya.

Earlier in the day, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement that high-level Turkish officials including foreign and national defense ministers along with the director of the Turkish intelligence agency paid an official visit to Libya on Monday with bilateral and regional issues on their agenda.

Çavuşoğlu stated that they were happy to be in Libya with a large Turkish delegation including National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar and Hakan Fidan, head of the National Intelligence Organization.

He said Turkey will continue to stand by the Libyan brothers they will intensify the contacts in the coming days.

Çavuşoğlu invited his Libyan counterpart to the Antalya Diplomacy Forum to be held in the second week of June.