After 8 months of blockage, Khalifa Haftar reopens the Libyan oil valves

Eastern Libyan military leader Khalifa Haftar on January 17, 2020 in Athens.

REUTERS / Costas Baltas

Text by: RFI Follow

6 min

In Libya, the blockade on oil fields and ports has been lifted under certain conditions.

It was Marshal Khalifa Haftar, the strong man from the east of the country, who announced it on Friday, September 18.

They had been blocked by groups close to the latter since mid-January.


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The announcement is made in a short speech by Marshal Khalifa Haftar on television.

The strong man from eastern Libya appears in his office dressed in a military uniform.

He announced that he had decided to resume the production and export of oil after an 8-month blockade of exports.

Unlocking under conditions

He specifies that this recovery

is done under conditions


First, he wants a fair distribution of oil revenues that are managed by the government of national unity (GNA), the one based in Tripoli, and recognized by the United Nations.

And then he wants a guarantee that they will not be used to support terrorism, in the words of the marshal.

The announcement comes following an agreement between Ahmed Miitig, the vice-president of the Presidential Council in Tripoli, and Khaled Khalifa Haftar, son of the marshal.

While these discussions took place in Russia, it was the Americans who gave the necessary guarantees to Khalifa Haftar for the resumption of production.

According to the spokesperson for the Libyan National Army (ANL), the agreement provides for the formation of a joint committee made up of personalities who participated in the discussions between the two camps.

Its mission: to control the export and distribution of oil money until a new government of national unity is formed.

10 billion dollars lost

In his speech, Khalifa Haftar affirms that he puts aside all political and military considerations, to respond to the suffering of the Libyans.

The blockade of oil fields and ports has resulted in nearly $ 10 billion in lost revenue, according to the National Petroleum Company.

Most importantly, it has exacerbated the electricity, fuel and cash shortages in Libya.

Moreover, last week, hundreds of people demonstrated in several cities of the country in the west and east of the country against shortages and against corruption.

The pipelines, the pumps, the wells themselves ... all of this has been damaged.

There is a part of the inherent capacity of the fields which is irreversibly lost.

We do not yet know the extent of this damage, because we are hardly restarting all this.

Jalel Harchaoui, researcher in The Hague (Netherlands) on the unblocking of the Libyan oil terminals

Victor Mauriat


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  • Libya

  • Oil

  • Raw materials

  • Khalifa Haftar

  • Energies

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