Smuggling oil in Libya harms sovereignty

The United States issued new sanctions aimed at oil smugglers in Libya, said the U.S. Treasury Department on Monday.

In statement, the United States Foreign Asset Control Office (OFAC) said it was sanctioning six people, 24 companies and seven vessels, banning Americans from engaging with targets and freezing all Property related to American jurisdiction.

The United Nations Security Council condemned the illicit exploitation of oil from Libya, which has been plunged into conflict since the conflict in 2011 that brought down Muammar Gaddafi, who had been running the country for over 40 years.

"Oil smuggling undermines Libya's sovereignty, gives fuel to the black market and contributes to the instability of the region while stealing from the population the resources that is rightfully hers," said OFAC's statement.

Libya's oil production has stabilized, but remains below the 1.6 million barrels per day that pumped before the insurgency seven years ago and suffers from theft, kidnapping and other security threats. The production of at least one of Libya's oil fields was also interrupted by disputes over the payment of security guards. Source: Extra newspaper.

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