Brussels— A EU Spokesperson issued a statement on Monday saying oil terminals that were seized by the Libyan National Army from outlaw militias on Sunday to remain under “the sole control of the international recognized Government of National Accord”.
It also called on all parties to “immediately cease hostilities and to refrain from any action that could further damage Libya's energy infrastructures”.
The Libyan National Army on Sunday took control of the four major oil terminals of Ras Lanuf, Sidra, Zueitina and Brega in a clean bloodless military operation that ended militias control of these facilities for almost three years at a cost to Libya of over $100 billion in lost revenue.
The Libyan army lead by General Khalifa Haftar issued a statement on Monday night urging the National Oil Corporation (NOC) to resume production of oil as the terminals have become secure.
Ibrahim Jadhran, a militia leader and self-appointed head of the Petroleum Facilities Guard (PFG), fled when his followers refused orders and some of them joined the Libyan army leaving large caches of weapons behind.
Jadhran, who has a history of affiliation with extremist terrorist organizations, has been lately courted by the UN Libya Envoy Martin Kobler and other Western governments as to become an ally of the UN-backed GNA against the Libyan national army in the “oil crescent”.
On August 22, the internationally recognized Libyan parliament voted against a motion of confidence in the Government of National Accord (GNA) which was unable to extend its authority beyond the walls of a tiny naval base in the capital Tripoli.
In an interview with Switzerland's Neue Zuercher Zeitung that was on 12 August, UN Libya Envoy Martin Kobler said that the GNA was crumbling and had lost the sympathy it received in April as it did not meet the expectations of the people amid sever power outages and a weakening currency.
Jadhran’s failure to stand ground in the face of the more disciplined Libyan army seems to have taken his supporters by surprise leading them to issue statements that will only further deepen their intervention in the internal affair of Libya which will lead to more instability and violence.
The EU statement said:
“The attacks over the weekend on several oil terminals in Libya endanger Libya's energy infrastructure at a time when Libya and its legitimate government need more than ever to be able to fully exploit Libya's oil fields for the benefit of its people.
“The EU calls on all parties to immediately cease hostilities and to refrain from any action that could further damage Libya's energy infrastructures, which must remain under the sole control of the internationally recognised Government of National Accord (GNA), as the sole legitimate government in Libya. The EU urges existing militias and armed groups to respect the authority of the GNA.
“The EU will continue to work to ensure the enforcement of UNSCR 2259, which includes measures concerning illicit oil exports, activities which could damage the integrity and unity of Libyan State financial institutions and the National Oil Company, and individuals and entities engaging in or providing support for acts that threaten the peace, stability or security of Libya.”