On Friday, a conflict broke out between the Libyan prime minister and the US special envoy over the oil management file in the country.
The Libyan Prime Minister, Dr. Osama Hammad, “We waved the red flag to stop the flow of oil revenue revenues We meant by it to preserve the state’s money and stop the hands of the abusers.”
Hammad added, “I direct the US special envoy to Libya, Richard Norland, to respect the sovereignty of the Libyan judiciary and not to interfere by siding with any party whatsoever.”
Hammad called on Norland to “not give priority to external interests over the interests and rights of the Libyan people, and not to make media statements without knowing and knowing the truth of the matter.”
He explained that “Norland’s statements are considered blatant interference in the affairs of the Libyan state and are based on the support of one party benefiting from wasting the people’s money.”
Hammad urged “the House of Representatives and the state to expedite practical steps to reach the presidential and parliamentary elections and to form a unified executive authority to manage the country’s affairs and resources.”
The US envoy refuses to close the oil institutions
For his part, the US envoy to Libya called, on Friday, the political parties in the country to avoid closing the oil facilities, and said that this would be devastating to the economy and harm all Libyans.
According to a statement released by the US embassy in Libya, the US envoy urged Libyan leaders to adopt a comprehensive revenue management mechanism as “a constructive way to address problems related to the distribution of oil revenues, and to establish transparency, without undermining the integrity of the Libyan economy or the neutrality of the National Oil Corporation.”
This came in response to threats made by the Libyan government mandated by Parliament, last Wednesday, to stop oil production and export crude, in the event that the judicial guard is not able to carry out his duties and monitor the accounts and funds of the National Oil Corporation.
The parliament-backed government accuses the national unity government in the capital, Tripoli, of wasting public money and using oil revenues to buy loyalties at home and abroad in order to remain in power, and demands administrative seizure of oil funds deposited in the accounts of the Oil Corporation, the Central Bank, and the Libyan Foreign Bank.
Stopping oil production and exports would lead to a loss of exports of about 1.2 million barrels, which is the daily production rate in this period, and thus a collapse in the state’s financial revenues.
The issue of equitable distribution of oil revenues and the way they are spent is one of the most important causes of the conflict in Libya and the most prominent motive for the continuation of the country’s crisis, as political parties dispute among themselves over control of oil money, and have not yet agreed on mechanisms for its distribution.
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