Libyan forces opposed to the country’s internationally recognized government have warned it that any attempts to export oil independently would force them to take military action to seize oil ports and facilities.
The conflict over oil is intensifying in Libya, where two rival governments, each backed by loose coalitions of ex-rebels who once fought together to oust Muammar Qaddafi, are battling for control of the North African OPEC producer.
Forces with Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni’s official government hold two key oil ports, Ras Lanuf and Es Sider, and he said over the weekend he would seek independent oil sales and open a bank account overseas to hold revenues.
Responding to the announcement, Ismail Shikri, a spokesman for forces allied with the rival Tripoli government, said any attempt by Thinni to sell oil bypassing the central bank and the National Oil Corporation (NOC) would trigger military action.
“Selling of oil beyond the Tripoli-based NOC is considered zero hour for our forces to launch a military operation by using all the means,” Shikri said.
Tripoli-allied forces in December tried to retake the two major ports, which have a combined export capacity of 600,000 barrels a day. Fighting closed the ports since then and a force majeure is still in place.
Late last month, an official said Tripoli-allied brigades pulled back from positions around Ras Lanuf and Es Sider to fight Islamist militants, raising hopes the two terminals would soon reopen.
نستخدم ملفات الكوكيز لنسهل عليك استخدام مواقعنا الإلكترونية ونكيف المحتوى والإعلانات وفقا لمتطلباتك واحتياجاتك الخاصة، لتوفير ميزات وسائل التواصل الاجتماعية ولتحليل حركة المرور لدينا...اعرف أكثر