By Jamal Adel.
Tripoli, 12 February 2014:
A valve on the pipeline carrying oil from the Sharara oilfield has again been . . .[restrict]tampered with near Reyayana in Jebel Nafusa causing a 60-percent cut in the flow of oil to the Zawia refinery and oil terminal.
Sharara oilfield manager, Hassan Al-Sideek, told the Libya Herald that a group of unknown men had “turned down the tap” in the pipeline yesterday evening.
Ten days ago, a small group turned down the same valve, causing a 40-percent reduction in flow and a consequent similar reduction on production at the oilfield. At the time, a source at Akakus Oil which operates the field said that those involved were Zintanis but added that they were acting on their own. The issue appeared to have been resolved and the valve opened.
It seems that the same people may again be involved.
Another Akakus source said today he believed those involved were Zintani members of the Petroleum Facilities Guard “demanding compensation”. The flow rate had been reduced by 60 percent, he stated.
“A number of elders met the blockaders two days ago in attempt to broker a deal and lift the blockade,” he added. “The blockaders seemed very cooperative at the time, but they’ve now turned very different from they were before.”
A reliable Zintan source also told this paper this evening that a group of young Zintanis were responsible for turning down the valve as well as for the blockade on the gas pipeline from the Waha field to the Mellitah gas complex near Zuwara.
Zintani elders were trying to put a stop to it, he said, adding that he did not know why the action was being taken. [/restrict]