CAIRO (Reuters) – Mustafa Sanallah, head of the National Oil Corporation in Libya, warned on Saturday of the risk of a disaster in the Libyan oil ports due to the increase in the military presence, with the presence of tanks holding huge stocks for months due to the closures.
Sanallah said in a video message that “the oil ports are closed and the export has stopped. If the oil tanks are exposed to any source of heat, any source of ignition, it will be a very big disaster.”
Eastern Libyan forces (the Libyan National Army) have halted energy exports since January, halting most production and filling storage tanks. The National Oil Corporation said after the latest round of war in June that mercenaries had entered oil fields and ports controlled by the LNA.
The company, which is based in Tripoli, in western Libya where the internationally recognized government is located, had previously said that the closure had led to technical problems in the fields and ports.
Sanallah, whose video was broadcast on the website of the National Oil Corporation, likened the risk of disaster to the explosion in the Beirut port on Tuesday.