Libya’s Al-Zawiya Oil Refinery Damaged in Armed Clashes

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On Saturday, Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC) announced that several sites in the Al-Zawiya refinery were damaged to varying degrees due to the armed clashes that occurred on Friday evening.

In a statement, the NOC said that preliminary statistics indicate that 29 sites were damaged, including oil derivatives tanks and several tanks. The company’s maintenance and safety teams are still carrying out an evaluation, inventory and treatment work.

The NOC called on everyone to exercise restraint and to distance oil installations from any armed actions that would endanger the lives of workers and harm the already dilapidated infrastructure of the oil sector.

On Friday, at least one person was killed and over a dozen were injured in Libya following clashes that broke out between armed groups in the city Al-Zawiya, West of Tripoli.

According to press reports, the clashes erupted between two armed groups affiliated with the Ministry of Interior and Defence in the city, after one of the group’s members was killed by some affiliates of the other group.

Various types of medium and heavy weapons were reportedly used during the clashes.

The Tunis-based Arab Organisation for Human Rights expressed its deep concern of the armed clashes. It said in a statement that the clashes taking place inside populated areas endanger the lives and properties of the residents.

Western Libya continues to suffer from the control of militias, as Tripoli has witnessed a new wave of insecurity and clashes between armed militias. Violent clashes have recently erupted between Al-Far and Ghneiwa, leading to extensive damages to the Al-Zawiya Oil Refinery Complex.

Other clashes in the Al-Farnaj district of Tripoli took place between Ghneiwa and the Judicial Police Affiliated with the (RADA) Special Deterrence Forces led by Abdel-Rauf Kara.

These events show that despite political progress being made, the country remains under the control of militias and armed groups.