United States deplores foreign interference in Libyan economy

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ANKARA

The US embassy in Libya regretted the foreign interference in the Libyan economy on Monday.

“After several days of intense diplomatic activity aimed at enabling the National Oil Corporation [NOC] to resume its vital, apolitical work as a means of defusing military tensions, the U.S. Embassy regrets that overseas efforts against Libya’s economic and financial sectors have hampered progress and increased the risk of confrontation “the embassy said in a statement.

He noted that the incursions of Russian mercenaries Wagner against the NOC installations and the contradictory messages conveyed by the militia of warlord Khalifa Haftar “have harmed all Libyans who are fighting for a secure and prosperous future”.

On Sunday, the CNOC accused the United Arab Emirates (UAE) of ordering Haftar’s forces to disrupt the country’s oil production and exports.

The NOC said oil production had been halted, referring to a recent statement by Haftar saying production would continue to be halted if certain conditions were not met.

He added that oil exports resumed on July 10 but Haftar’s forces ordered an export blockade on July 11 and withdrew from negotiations.

“The illegal obstruction of the long-awaited audit of the banking sector further undermines the desire of all Libyans for economic transparency,” the embassy said. “These disappointing actions will not deter the Embassy from its commitment to work with responsible Libyan institutions, such as the Government of National Accord. [GNA] and the House of Representatives [HOR]. “

The embassy expressed its determination to continue working “to protect the sovereignty of Libya, achieve a lasting ceasefire and support a Libyan consensus on the transparent management of oil and gas revenues.”

He warned that “those who undermine the Libyan economy and cling to military escalation will face isolation and the risk of sanctions.”

“We are convinced that the Libyan people see clearly who is ready to help Libya move forward and who chose irrelevance instead,” the embassy added.

Oil production has almost come to a halt in Libya after pro-Haftar groups shut down oil facilities in the east of the country in January to cut resources for the UN-recognized Libyan government.

Libya, with Africa’s largest oil reserves, can produce 1.2 million barrels of crude oil per day. But production has fallen below 100,000 barrels per day due to disruptions by pro-Haftar militias over the past six months.

Since April 2019, Haftar’s illegitimate forces have launched attacks on the Libyan capital, Tripoli, and other parts of northwest Libya, killing more than 1,000, including women and children.

But the Libyan government has recently achieved significant victories, pushing Haftar’s forces out of Tripoli and the strategic city of Tarhouna.

The country’s new government was founded in 2015 as part of a UN-led deal, but efforts for a long-term political settlement failed due to a military offensive by Haftar, which was backed by France, the Russian paramilitary group Wagner, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt.

The UN recognizes the Libyan government headed by Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj as the country’s legitimate authority.

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