Libya’s state oil firm may evacuate Zawiya refinery due to fighting nearby

Clashes between armed groups have broken out in recent days around Zawiya port and oil complex. (Reuters/ File photo)
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Updated 28 December 2019

Libya’s state oil firm may evacuate Zawiya refinery due to fighting nearby

  • NOC might also shut down the El-Sharara oilfield, whose crude is exported via Zawiya
  • Clashes between armed groups have broken out in recent days around Zawiya port and oil complex

TRIPOLI: Libyan state oil firm NOC is considering the closure of its western Zawiya port and evacuating staff from the refinery located there due to clashes nearby, a statement said on Saturday.
NOC might also shut down the El-Sharara oilfield, whose crude is exported via Zawiya port, the statement said.
Clashes between armed groups have broken out in recent days around Zawiya, during which a missile almost hit the oil complex. Forces allied to Libya’s internationally recognized government on Friday accused eastern forces loyal to Khalifa Haftar of having tried to strike the oil port complex.
Haftar’s forces have been trying to take the capital Tripoli, 40 km east of Zawiya, in a campaign since April.
Zawiya is Libya’s biggest functioning refinery, serving the capital Tripoli located some 40km east as well as regions in the west and south of the country. Two workers at Zawiya port said the refinery was working on Saturday.
On Thursday an air strike blamed by local officials on Haftar’s forces hit a pharmacy in Zawiya town, killing two people.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday he would send troops to Libya at the request of Tripoli as soon as next month, putting the North African country’s conflict at the center of wider regional frictions.


Mubarak to be buried in ‘small’ military funeral

Updated 13 min 29 sec ago

Mubarak to be buried in ‘small’ military funeral

  • The event will be low key because of Mubarak's conviction for embezzling state funds, source tells Arab News
  • Unclear whether President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi will attend

CAIRO: Former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak will be buried in a small military funeral, a source told Arab News.

The event will be low key because of his conviction, along with his two sons, on corruption charges, the source said.

Normally, a military funeral would not be held for anyone with a criminal record.

The source was unable to confirm whether President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, would attend the funeral or if any other Arab leaders would be there. It was also unclear when it would take place.

Mubarak, who ruled Egypt for three decades before he was toppled during the Arab Spring, died on Tuesday at the age of 91.

He had been in intensive care in a military hospital in Cairo for more than a month, after undergoing abdominal surgery.

Mubarak was cleared on appeal in 2014 of charges that he failed to prevent the killing of hundreds of protesters during the 2011 uprising against his rule. But the legal proceedings linked to the uprising would drag on for three more years.

In 2015, he was sentenced to three years in prison over the embezzlement of state money allocated for presidential palaces. His sons Alaa and Gamal were also jailed for their roles in the scandal.

On Saturday, a Cairo court acquitted the two brothers, along with seven others, of stock market manipulation in 2007 during the sale of a bank.

Mubarak became the fourth president of Egypt in October 1981, taking over after Anwar Sadat was assassinated by extremists.

He stood down on Feb. 11, 2011 after 18 days of mass protests and handed power to Egypt’s military.

Born in the village of Menufiyah in the Nile Delta, Mubarak graduated from the air force academy in 1950, and became air force chief of staff in 1972.

In 1975, Sadat chose him as vice president, and after Sadat’s death, Mubarak assumed the presidency after a confirmation referendum. He renewed his term through similar referendums in the years 1987, 1993 and 1999.

He won a presidential election held in 2005 - the first held during his rule.

After his downfall, he was put on trial over the deaths of protesters and sentenced to life imprisonment in June 2012.

He finally walked free in 2017, when Egypt’s highest appeals court cleared him of conspiring to kill protesters. Most of his time in detention was spent at a military hospital.