The UN-backed Libyan Government of National Accord (GNA) will not allow any "mercenaries and criminal gangs" to capture the country's oilfields and ports and use its natural resources for blackmail purposes, GNA Deputy Defense Minister Col. Saleh Al-Namroush said on Tuesday
TRIPOLI (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 30th June, 2020) The UN-backed Libyan Government of National Accord (GNA) will not allow any "mercenaries and criminal gangs" to capture the country's oilfields and ports and use its natural resources for blackmail purposes, GNA Deputy Defense Minister Col. Saleh Al-Namroush said on Tuesday.
Last week, the GNA's main rival the Libyan National Army (LNA) said that it had begun to patrol oil reserves and ports in a bid to defend the so-called oil crescent region from any attacks that could be conducted by armed groups operating in the North African country. On Monday, Sheikh Senussi al-Haleeq, the deputy chairman of the Supreme Council of Libyan Sheikhs and Elders, told Sputnik that the country's tribes in cooperation with the LNA are in control of all the oilfields located in Libya's eastern and southwestern regions.
"Energy resources, oilfields and ports, as well as water and other natural resources are for all Libyans. We will not let those who tamper with [these resources] to extend their arms to it and will not allow it to be a source of exploitation or blackmail, or be occupied by mercenaries and criminal gangs," Al-Namroush said in a statement published on the Facebook page of GNA's Operation Volcano of Rage.
The military entities, as well as the educational, health, cultural and others bodies, fall under the governmental legislative, judicial and executive powers, Al-Namroush said, adding that if the military authorities have weapons, "it does not mean that it can seize power, and if it does, it must be tried and punished."
The "oil crescent" area includes foreign petroleum companies and stretches along the country's coast from the port city of Tobruk, where the LNA-backed eastern Libyan parliament is based, to the oil depot of As Sidr.