Tensions surrounding Libya’s Zueitina oil terminal which is under the control of rival forces has elicited concerns from the governments of France, United States, United Kingdom, Italy, Spain and Germany.
In a joint statement released on Wednesday by the French foreign ministry, the countries requested that all oil installations be returned to the Libyan Government of National Unity (GNA) headed by Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj.
“Without precondition, without reservation or delay, all oil installations should be handed to the legitimate national authorities,” the statement said.
They called on all the parties to refrain from any hostile acts and avoid actions that may damage or disrupt Libya’s energy infrastructure.
The six countries also supported the Libyan government’s decision to resume exportation of oil adding that “it is in the interests of all Libyans to give their full support to efforts by the GNA to provide basic services to the Libyan people.”
The UN-backed Libyan government announced plans to resume oil exportation which had stalled due to political conflicts and jihadist attacks.
Rival forces loyal to General Khalifa Haftar based in eastern Libya opposed to the decision and threatened to take over the Zueitina oil terminal which is under the control of a rival faction, the Guards oil installations.
On July 26, their forces mobilized armored vehicles to a city near Zueitina creating fears of confrontation.