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The Libyan war is fought in banks as much as battlefields

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Analysis. Facing bankruptcy and stalemate, Haftar’s military objectives include taking control of the central bank in Tripoli and, if possible, circumventing oil blockades.

written by Alberto Negri

Topic Middle East and North Africa

May 24, 2019

The process of dividing up and looting Libya’s riches has reached a turning point. While neither General Haftar, after visiting Macron in Paris, nor Sarraj in Tripoli are ready for a truce, the Italians find themselves in a very unusual situation as regards Libya.

During the fascist period, Italy fought to unify the major Libyan provinces of Tripolitania and Cyrenaica, at a very high cost in human lives (80,000 dead). Now, however, from 2011 to the present day, they have been helpless spectators to Libya’s disintegration. Italy has had no say at all in this, in spite of the blustering sovereignism of those in its government. In Libya, there are now two opposing governments, two central banks, and two oil industries: an East-West duality that the Libyans are paying for in terms of deaths, refugees, an erratic economy and a very uncertain future. And the African migrants are paying for it as well, abandoned to their fate in a Mediterranean Bermuda Triangle that extends all the way to Lampedusa. Europe is powerless in this drama. Only Trump’s United States, the........

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