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Libya Oil Disruption Worsens Amid Anti-Government Protest

Libya Oil Disruption Worsens Amid Anti-Government Protest thumbnail

The disruption of Libyan crude exports worsened as rebels shut down a recently re-opened oil port after protesting over the appointment of the country’s new prime minister.

Petroleum Facilities Guards members aligned with federalist rebels stopped loadings at the Hariga oil port in eastern Libya, Oil Ministry Director of Measurement Ibrahim Al Awami said by telephone from Tripoli. The guard has also banned flights operated by state-run National Oil Corp. to Zueitina, another oil port in the east, he said.

The eastern rebels’ leader Ibrahim Al-Jedran “seems to have given instructions for this protest to happen because he’s unhappy with the new government,” Awami said.

The loss of Libyan oil production, down about 90 percent from its pre-conflict level, has boosted the price of Brent, the benchmark for half the world’s traded crude. On May 21, Citigroup raised its 2014 Brent price forecast to $109 a barrel, from $104 a barrel, citing the Ukraine-Russia crisis and supply uncertainty from nations including Libya.

Brent crude futures for July traded at $109.99 a barrel at 4:49 p.m. on the ICE Futures Europe Exchange in London. The front-month Brent contract has averaged about $108 a barrel this year on ICE.

The shutdown of Hariga may reduce Libyan crude output by around 40,000 barrels a day, Richard Mallinson, analyst at Energy Aspects Ltd., said by e-mail. The eastern rebellion, coupled with protests for jobs and political rights that shut down western oilfields, cut Libya’s oil output to 160,000 barrels a day, or a 10th of its 1.6 million installed capacity, Libyan National Oil Corp. spokesman Mohamed Elharari said by phone today from Tripoli.

Illegal Appointment

Al-Jedran was a former commander in the Petroleum Facilities Guards before setting up the Executive Office for the Barqa Region, which seeks self-rule for the eastern region known as Cyrenaica. Ali al-Hasy, spokesman for the Executive Office for the Barqa Region, couldn’t be reached for comment today.

The federalists are objecting to Ahmed Maiteg’s appointment as prime minister because of alleged Islamist ties. They threatened yesterday to reoccupy the Hariga and Zueitina oil export terminals, which were returned to government control last month.

“Maiteg’s appointment is illegal,” al-Hasy said by phone yesterday. “There was no quorum to convene a voting session. If the Congress doesn’t backtrack on this, we will consider canceling the April 6 agreement” that allowed Zueitina and Hariga to resume exports, he said.

Two more crude export terminals seized last July, including Es Sider, Libya’s largest, remain in rebel hands.

Hostile Factions

General Khalifa Haftar, whose self-proclaimed National Army has been battling Islamist groups in eastern Libya, respects the Barqa rebels’ demand for more autonomy, Colonel Mohammad Hijazi, a spokesman for the general, said by phone from Tripoli today.

“They are children of the nation too, and we respect their demand for a federal system,” said Hijazi, speaking of the Barqa rebels. The Barqa group voiced support for Haftar’s fight against the Islamists on May 20.

Haftar suggested that Libya’s Supreme Council of Justice resolve the dispute over Maiteg’s appointment by selecting a caretaker government that would rule until the June 25 parliamentary elections, said Hijazi. “That would be a way out of the crisis,” he said.

Many Flashpoints

The shutdown of Hariga “is just one of the many potential flash points for armed clashes between forces loyal to Maiteg and those that are siding with Haftar,” said Mallinson of Energy Aspects. “It is now two well-armed and hostile factions confronting one another, which is bringing Libya closer to civil war than at any time since the overthrow of Qaddafi.”

Haftar started on May 16 an offensive against Islamist groups accused of killing civil servants, journalists, and members of the military and police in eastern Libya. Fighters aligned with Haftar also stormed Libya’s parliament in Tripoli on May 18 and declared it dissolved.

Extremist groups Haftar is fighting in the east “could attack anything, including the oil facilities,” Hijazi said. The National Army, which has received support from units of the regular army and air force, is “committed to ensuring the safety of the oil facilities,” he said.


15 Comments on "Libya Oil Disruption Worsens Amid Anti-Government Protest"

  1. Juan Pueblo on Tue, 27th May 2014 4:20 pm 

    Overthrowing Qadaffi was a mistake. I wonder if Libyan oil production will ever recover. Libya has large oil and water reserves that will be badly needed by TPTB at some point.

  2. Northwest Resident on Tue, 27th May 2014 4:59 pm 

    JP — Pure speculation: What are the chances that the USA fully intended to suppress Libyan oil production in order to save that oil for some point in the future?

    If you believe like I do that TPTB are fully aware of the coming collapse, are preparing for it, and in fact might even be the ones to flick the switch and get things started once they have all preparations in place — then it makes sense to stifle oil production today, just keep it at “barely enough” levels, the goal being to keep BAU inching along until it isn’t needed anymore AND to save as much of “the good stuff” for post-collapse new world order rebuilding as possible.

    I know — thinking like that is crazy. Definitely “out of the box” — but not out of the realm of possibility…

  3. dissident on Tue, 27th May 2014 6:25 pm 

    There is not enough oil in Libya to matter. Even one third of US and EU oil consumption is several million barrels per day. It would take several Libya’s to do it.

    Libya is yet another stellar success of NATO meddling. Just like Ukraine.

  4. GregT on Tue, 27th May 2014 6:38 pm 

    “There is not enough oil in Libya to matter.”

    There certainly would be, if our populations were culled by a large percentage.

    Crazy? I know what I would do given the circumstances, if I was the King of the world.

  5. noobtube on Tue, 27th May 2014 6:38 pm 

    So, the degenerates in the North think they are entitled to African oil?

    Well, the Western degenerates will have to learn the hard way that the world is getting really sick of their arrogant routine.

    Will the degenerates ever learn? Nope.

  6. GregT on Tue, 27th May 2014 6:50 pm 


    Just for the record, over 36 million Americans, are of African origin. That would be the entire population of Canada.

    But who’s counting right? Would they be Black degenerates, I wonder?

  7. noobtube on Tue, 27th May 2014 7:18 pm 

    If Africans in the Western Hemisphere were dictating how African oil is used in the Western Hemisphere, that would be one thing.

    But, that is not the case.

    The sexual degenerates are stealing African oil, to then terrorize and brutalize Africans not only in the Western Hemisphere, but all over the world.

    The degenerates are blowing through all their oil, and what do they have to show for it… an outrageously expensive and ineffective United States military, a ridiculous NATO, a pointless UN/World Bank/IMF, arrogant & stupid populations, and loads of hate for those who live simpler and more sustainable lives.

    The United States and the other homosexual promoters are in the decline… like Rome and Ancient Greece.

    There is no future in being a sexual degenerate. Fortunately, that is not the culture of the South, only of the deviants in the “West.”

  8. MSN Fanboy on Tue, 27th May 2014 7:52 pm 

    There is no future in being a sexual degenerate. Fortunately, that is not the culture of the South, only of the deviants in the “West”


    No, the Culture of the south is superstition and ritual slaughter 😛 imagine if the ‘west’ and its hegemonic imperialistic meddling ways hadn’t ‘intervened’ You would have REMAINED DIRT POOR AND KILLING EACH OTHER WITH SPEARS. ROLF. Savage

  9. MSN Fanboy on Tue, 27th May 2014 7:54 pm 

    oh wait, you are mostly dirt poor but kill each other with AK-47s 😛 am I bad.

  10. GregT on Tue, 27th May 2014 8:00 pm 


    So your hatred is not directed at any particular race, or any particular groups of people. (other than homosexuals) Is that what you are saying?

    Do you hate all countries north, or west of certain latitudes or longitudes, or just a few specifically? Do you hate all of the people in those countries equally, or some more than others?

    I know it must be difficult for you. Let it out man, it must be tearing you up inside. All of that hatred and anger.

  11. Yeti on Tue, 27th May 2014 8:09 pm 

    To expect anything else from a “country” that was one man’s plaything for decades is silly. There’s no conspiracy here, just humans being humans in the petri dish they were handed.

    As for the idiot on this thread, Africans have been their own worst enemy since we invented the pointed rock. Which is understandable when you consider how bloody huge “Africa” is.

  12. Northwest Resident on Tue, 27th May 2014 9:09 pm 

    dissident — GregT made the counterpoint to your comment that I would have made, but I want to elaborate. You’re assuming BAU continues “as is” with your comment. My wild-assed speculation was envisioning a post-collapse scenario, where millions of cars driving back and forth to work and to the local McD’s would most definitely not be happening. In a world where TPTB tighten the spigot on oil and use it only for pre-determined and officially sanctioned purposes, Libya’s oil could potentially last for a long time.

  13. GregT on Tue, 27th May 2014 10:07 pm 


    I was speculating that TPTB could simply keep all of those reserves in the ground until after they cause WW3 and wipe out a very large portion of the Earth’s populations. Then they could use the remaining people as food and oil slaves while they jet set around the world, and hang out in yachts with their buddies.

  14. GregT on Tue, 27th May 2014 11:00 pm 


    Oops, misread your post. Sounds like we’re both ‘crazy’.

  15. Northwest Resident on Wed, 28th May 2014 12:18 am 

    GregT — The right kind of crazy can be good!

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