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Libya says will bomb N.Korean ship if it exports seized oil

Published on Mar 9, 2014 2:07 AM
 

TRIPOLI (REUTERS) - Libya threatened on Saturday to bomb a North Korean-flagged tanker if it tries to export oil from a rebel-controlled port east of Tripoli, in a major escalation of a standoff over the country's petroleum wealth.

The rebels, who have seized three major ports since August to demand more autonomy, warned Tripoli against staging an attack to halt the oil sale after the tanker docked at Es Sider export terminal.

The oil standoff is one part of deepening turmoil in the North African OPEC member, where the government is struggling to control militias who helped topple Muammar Gaddafi in 2011 but kept their weapons and are challenging state authority.

A local television station controlled by protesters showed footage of pro-autonomy rebels holding a lengthy ceremony and slaughtering a camel to celebrate their first oil shipment.

 
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