Voice of America (Washington, DC)

6 April 2014

Libyan Rebels Agree to End Blockade At 2 Oil Ports

Photo: Kate Thomas
Passengers wait to disembark at Lampedusa port (file photo).

Libya's government has reached an agreement with rebels to reopen two of four oil ports, in a major breakthrough to end an eight-month blockade.

Libyan officials Sunday announced the opening of the ports of Zueitina and Hariga - the smaller of the four terminals seized by rebels demanding more autonomy from Tripoli and a greater share of oil wealth.

The two sides have agreed to reopen the two remaining ports, Ras Lanuf and As-Sidra, after two to four weeks of more negotiations.

Full details of the deal were not immediately known, but the reopening of two ports will boost Libya's weak government, which is struggling to control the North African country nearly three years after an uprising ousted veteran leader Moammar Gadhafi.

The blockade has cost the government billions of dollars in lost oil revenues.

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