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Libyan army asks armed groups to allow oil export

 The Libyan army has asked former members of armed groups to end their sit-in on the oil fields and terminals so that the country’s oil export can resume.

In a communiqué published on the website of the Defence Ministry, the Army chief was quoted to have said: “Put an end without conditions to your sit-in to allow for the pumping of oil towards the terminals and the ports and the resumption of the economy that is necessary for the edification of the State.

”Our country is threatened by dislocation and increasing insecurity,” he said.

It is estimated that Libya has lost about US$6 billion because of the closure of oil fields and terminals, and the government has had difficulty in finding a solution to the crisis.

Earlier, Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zeidan warned that the government would be unable to pay public officers their wages if the strikes and sit-ins persist on the oil production sites.

Last week, the Oil Workers Union asked the leader of a movement seeking autonomy to help in the running of the Ras Lanouf oil terminal in the east of the country.

Ras Lanouf, Libya’s second biggest terminal, exports more than 200,000 barrels of oil daily.

Official statistics indicate that oil export in Libya has declined to one-fifth of its level before the start of the protests. 

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