UNSMIL condemns the shutting down of El Sharara oilfield

The Address | Benghazi – Libya

TRIPOLI – The United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) condemned in a statement on Monday shutting down of El Sharara oilfield.

UNSMIL stated that “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.”

UNSMIL called for “the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of the armed elements from the area.”

The Mission also said that it “recognizes that the residents of the South have legitimate grievances and that urgent issues of delivery of services must be addressed.” adding, “such acts of violence and lawlessness exacerbate the already deficient provision of services in the South, further depriving its residents.”

UNSMIL concluded by urging the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA) “to act quickly and decisively to step up service-delivery to the region and the UN stands ready to support.”

A group of tribesmen, who call themselves the Fezzan Anger Movement, and a local unit of the Petroleum Facilities Guards (PFG) had in Saturday afternoon announced a shutdown of El Sharara oil field, located in Murzuq Desert southwest of Libya, to press for demands of more development.

Tribesmen of the Fezzan Anger Movement living in the impoverished areas hosting the El Sharara filed had first appeared in October at the facility threatening to close it unless demands were met.

The Tripoli-based National Oil Corporation (NOC) condemned the shutting down of El Sharara oilfield in a statement on Sunday and demanded the PFG leadership to take “swift action” against the local unit, listing their names in the statement and accusing them of “exploiting the suffering of southern Libyans for personal reward.”