President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has talked to his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin by phone about the recent developments in Syria late Thursday, RIA news agency reported. The two leaders agreed to increase military coordination in Syria against the Daesh terrorist group, the Kremlin said in a statement. During their conversation, the two leaders also discussed the Astana process and exchanged views on the upcoming Turkey-Russia High Level Cooperation Council (HLCC) meeting in March. A statement released by the Turkish General Staff later on Thursday said that Russian jets mistakenly targeted Turkish soldiers near Syria’s al-Bab leading to the death of three soldiers and injuring 11 others. The wounded Turkish soldiers were transferred to a nearby hospital after initial medical treatment. A bomb mistakenly hit a building, in which Turkish soldiers were located, while a Russian warplane was targeting Daesh positions in al-Bab, the statement elaborated. Russian authorities also stated that the incident was an accident, expressing their grief and condolences, it added. Both Turkish and Russian parties have launched an investigation regarding the incident.
On Wednesday the Tobruk-based Libyan House of Representatives said that it considers a recent Memorandum of Understanding signed between the Italian prime minister Paolo Gentiloni and Chairman of the Presidential Council of Libya Fayez al-Sarraj to be null and void. The agreement was for cooperation and development and against clandestine migration, human trafficking and smuggling. It also included measures to strengthen border control. The anouncement was made by the Tobruk parliamentary body itself in a statement through the Al-Wasat website, which said that the presidential council and its president did not have jurisdiction to make such choices on the basis of the constitution and judicial sentences. ”An issue like that of clandestine migration, ” the statement said, ”is one of the important issues linked to the choice of the Libyan people through the representatives that they elected democratically through voting, and not the interests of individuals that do not have the trust of the House of Representatives, which is the legitimate power, nor the interests of European countries, and especially the Italian Republic.” Italy, it continued, ”is trying to get rid of the burden and the dangerous problems caused by clandestine migration at the security, economic and social level in exchange for a bit of material support that it is forced to offer to reduce the number of illegal migrants.”