Weekly Digest – Libya (01st December 2020)

Weekly Highlights

  • Libyan MPs declare readiness to move toward conflict settlement
  • Haftar mobilises troops in eastern Libya
  • Libya to utilize Spanish expertise in airports management
  • US Blacklists Libya’s Kaniyat Armed Group
  • The brewing war for Libya’s oil revenues
  • IOM: Over 150 Ghanaians return from Libya
  • Currency Exchange:
    • Bank exchange rate:  USD 1 – LYD 1.3602
    • Black market exchange rate:  USD 1 – LYD 6.69

Libyan MPs declare readiness to move toward conflict settlement

Members of Libya’s House of Representatives, the elected permanent parliament based in the eastern city of Tobruk, said in a joint declaration on Saturday they were ready to move toward settling the nine-year-long conflict.  “We assure the people of Libya of our determination to move toward overcoming the state of conflict and the rift in all governmental bodies, and toward preserving the unity and integrity of the state and its sovereignty across the entire territory.” TASS

Haftar mobilises troops in eastern Libya

One month after the Libyan military agreement, General Khalifa Haftar’s militia has shown no indication of implementing the accord’s conditions, which require the evacuation of mercenaries from the frontlines of the Sirte-Jafra axis.  On the contrary, Haftar has resumed efforts to mobilise troops and foreign mercenaries on the western and southern fronts of the city of Sirte. Meanwhile, the 5 + 5 Joint Military Commission (JMC) is holding meetings at its permanent headquarters to supervise the implementation of the Geneva ceasefire agreement.  MEMO

Libya to utilize Spanish expertise in airports management

The Head of the Libyan Airports Authority Mohammed Baytelmal has discussed with the ambassador of Spain to Libya Javier García-Larrache cooperation with Spanish firms in construction, infrastructure and other projects in Libya’s airports.  The discussion of cooperation came Wednesday in a meeting between Baytelmal and García-Larrache in Tripoli in the presence of a number of Libyan Airports Authority officials. LIBYA OBSERVER

US Blacklists Libya’s Kaniyat Armed Group

The US has imposed sanctions on Libya’s Kaniyat group, alleging it was responsible for murdering hundreds of civilians in Tarhouna.  The Treasury Department took this step against the armed group and its leader after Russia last week prevented a UN Security Council committee from imposing sanctions over human rights abuses by the group.  The United States and Germany earlier this month proposed that the Council’s 15-member Libya sanctions committee impose an asset freeze and travel ban on Kaniyat.  AAWSAT

The brewing war for Libya’s oil revenues

The looming concern is that retired General Khalifa Haftar will re-impose a blockade on the country’s oil facilities as he had earlier this year, costing the nation nothing short of 11 billion dollars according to the NOC and shrinking the oil production to a depressing 90 thousand barrels-per-day.  In late September on condition that a new commission is formed to decide how oil revenues are spent, the eight-month restrictions on fields and ports were lifted and production started once again, skyrocketing to an unexpected 1.2 million barrels per day in just months.  LIBYAN EXPRESS

IOM: Over 150 Ghanaians return from Libya

More than 150 Ghanaian migrants have been brought back from Libya through the first charter flight of its kind since COVID-19-related border closures, the International Organization of Migration (IOM) announced on Friday, Anadolu Agency reports.  The 150 Ghanaians travelled from Libya to their homeland on Nov. 24, to arrive in the Kotoka International Airport (KIA), in Accra, according to an IOM statement.  “Upon arrival, migrants were tested for COVID-19 and provided with onward transportation cash assistance for their immediate needs, including travel to their home communities. The most vulnerable received medical and psychosocial assistance,” the statement said.  MEMO


List of holidays in Libya 2020

Exchange rates – Libyan Dinar

According to our most recent information (24th & 29th November 2020) the Libyan Dinar has the following exchange rates.

The exchange rate from your own bank or credit card company will differ somewhat from the exchange rates as mentioned above. Your bank or credit card company might also apply additional international charges.


Crime levels in Libya remain high, including the threat of kidnapping for ransom. Westerners and U.S. citizens have been targets of these crimes.

Terrorist groups continue plotting attacks in Libya. Violent extremist activity in Libya remains high, and extremist groups have made threats against U.S. government officials and citizens. Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting tourist locations, hotels, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, and government facilities.

Outbreaks of violence between competing armed groups can occur with little warning and have the potential to impact U.S. citizens. The capital, Tripoli, and other cities, such as Surman, Al-Jufra, Misrata, Ajdabiya, Benghazi, Sabha, and Dernah, have witnessed fighting among armed groups, as well as terrorist attacks. Hotels and airports frequented by Westerners have been the targets of these attacks. Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.

For the latest advice from the Libyan government, please visit the National Centre of Disease Control (NCDC) webpage at ncdc.org.ly/Ar/

If you decide to travel to Libya:

  • Carry proof of citizenship and valid immigration status at all times.
  • Avoid demonstrations and crowds.
  • Make contingency plans to leave.
  • Establish your own personal security plan in coordination with your employer or host organisation or consider consulting with a professional security organization.
  • Develop a communication plan with family and/or your employer or host organization.

Libyan forces arrest seven Al Qaeda-linked militants

Libyan forces said they arrested seven terrorists affiliated with Al Qaeda in country’s south-west on Saturday.  The arrests were made during a security operation carried out in the Chareb and Targhin areas of Ubari city, Maj Gen Ahmed Al Mismari, spokesman for the Libyan National Army, said in a post on Facebook.  He said the forces seized large quantities of ammunition, weapons and documents from the terrorists, who were of various nationalities.  

Maj Gen Al Mismari said the dawn sweeps by the Tariq bin Ziyad Brigade and the 116 Infantry Brigade were part of the LNA’s operations to pursue and eliminate extremist terrorist cells and maintain national security. 

Last week Al Qaeda’s North African branch, known as Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb or AQIM, announced the appointment of its new leader while confirming the death of its former chief Abdelmalek Droukdel in June.  Algerian Yazid Mubarak, an Algerian also known as Abu Ubaida Yusuf Al Annabi, was named as the successor to Droukdel, who was killed in Mali by French forces.

Turkish soldiers continue to provide military training, consultancy for Libyan Army

The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) continues to provide military training, humanitarian aid and consultancy for the Libyan Army as a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Turkey and Libya marked its first anniversary on Nov. 27.

TSK personnel, who are in Libya on the official invitation of the U.N.-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA), have been providing support to hundreds of Libyan military students in various capacities.  The inadequacy of state institutions, especially the lack of a modern and professional army, that emerged after the collapse of Moammar Gadhafi’s regime during the Arab Spring, are considered the main reasons behind many of Libya’s recent troubles.

The MoU involves technical information, support, development, maintenance, repair, planning and material support, training and consultancy services regarding the use of weapons systems and equipment.  It covers joint military exercises, the security and defense industry, counterterrorism, illegal migration, the security of land, sea and air borders, narco-terrorism, anti-smuggling, operations on improvised explosives and natural disasters, conducting joint operations as well as the organizational structure of the defense and security forces.


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The head of the Libyan presidential council, Fayez al-Sarraj, has received in Tripoli the CEO of ENI, Claudio Descalzi, the head of international relations, Lapo Pistelli, and the general director of natural resources, Alessandro Puliti, at the presence of the director of the National Oil Corporation (NOC), Mustafa Sanalla. The news was reported on Facebook by the presidential council, adding that ”the meeting is part of the partnership in the oil and gas sector to continue the company’s projects in Libya” and evaluate ”the possibility of new investments to contribute to the relaunch of the Libyan economy”. ANSA MED

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More than 120 Libyan deputies pledged Saturday in Morocco to “end the divisions” that undermine their country, starting by convening the elected parliament as soon as they return home.  At the end of five days of talks in Tangier, Morocco, 123 of the parliament’s 180 members pledged to put an end to “hate speech” and “divisions” that undermine Libyan institutions.  They vowed to hold “parliamentary elections and to complete the transition as soon as possible,” and that all members of the House of Representatives would meet in session “as soon as they return” to Libya.  DAILY SABAH

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Libyan lawmakers meeting in Morocco on Saturday announced that they had reached an agreement that sees the eastern city of Benghazi become the constitutional base for their country’s parliament.  A hundred MPs concluded their consultative talks in Tangier after five days of discussions aimed at bridging divisions between the country’s divided factions.  They agreed to follow up on their discussions during a parliament session that will be held in Libya’s Ghadames city.  The MPs expressed their determination to end the division at all state institutions and preserve national unity and sovereignty.  AAWSAT

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The United Arab Emirates has halted issuing new visas to citizens of 13 Muslim-majority countries, including Libya, according to a document issued by Abu Dhabi seen by Reuters.  The document said applications for new employment and visit visas had been suspended for nationals, those outside the UAE, of 13 countries that also included Syria and Yemen, Algeria, Kenya, Iraq, Lebanon, Tunisia, Turkey, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Somalia until further notice.  The UAE ban on Libyans comes as Abu Dhabi continues to support Khalifa Haftar against the legitimate UN-recognized Government of National Accord in Libya with weapons, funding and military equipment.  LIBYA OBSERVER

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Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio, at the opening of MED 2020 online conference called on the international community to stop foreign interference in the Libyan crisis.  The Italian Minister noted that unilateral actions by Turkey in the Eastern Mediterranean has been affecting the situation in Libya, including violations on the arms embargo on Libya.  “International community has a task of preventing foreign interference that might spoil this process. It is clear that for Italy stabilization in Libya and restoring the rule of law on its territory is a priority.  LIBYA EXPRESS


The total number of Covid-19 cases in Libya rose to 82,809 including 1183 fatalities on Monday 30 Nov 20. The National Center for Disease Control recorded 379 new cases, 552 recoveries and 17 deaths in the past 24 hours.