Continental Focus, International Reach

UNSMIL Comments on Deteriorating Situation in Southern Libya

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

UNSMIL Statement on the Deteriorating Situation in Southern Libya, the Shutting Down of Sharara Oil field

The Mission calls for the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of the armed elements from the area

TRIPOLI, Libya, December 11, 2018/ — The United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) expresses its strong condemnation of Sunday’s consecutive, but unrelated, attacks against civilians and facilities in the South of Libya and calls on the Libyan authorities to take prompt and effective action against the lawlessness engulfing the region.

The murder of six hostages taken during ISIL’s attack on the town of al-Foqha on 28 October 2018 is particularly abhorrent.  The senseless murders are a serious violation of international humanitarian law and may amount to war crimes. The Mission extends its condolences to the families of the victims.

UNSMIL also denounces the attacks on the Sharara Oil field and al-Hasawna Water System.  The forced shutdown of the Sharara Oil field by armed elements claiming attachment to the local Petroleum Facilities Guard, if sustained, will result in a production loss of 388,000 barrels a day, amounting to $32.5 million dollars.   The Mission calls for the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of the armed elements from the area.

The UN recognizes that the residents of the South have legitimate grievances and that urgent issues of delivery of services must be addressed.   Such acts of violence and lawlessness exacerbate the already deficient provision of services in the South, further depriving its residents.   Interference with the livelihood of Libyans and Libya’s national wealth is a blow against Libyans everywhere.

The Mission urges the Government of National Accord to act quickly and decisively to step up service-delivery to the region and the UN stands ready to support.