By Jamal Adel.
Tripoli, 23 February 2013:
Oil production has again fallen after one of the country’s main oilfields was blockaded by more . . .[restrict]protests, according to the National Oil Corporation (NOC).
The latest figures of 231,000 barrels per day (b/d) is a significant decline from 370,000 b/d announced by NOC on Wednesday. Production plummeted after Tuareg demonstrators resumed a blockade at the Sharara oilfield, the second largest oilfield in the country.
The Manager of the oilfield, Hassan Al-Sideek, told the Libya Herald that protesters resumed their protest yesterday, adding that closing the oilfield again would cause serious damage to generators.
The demonstrators, demanding the removal of Obari’s unelected Local Council, forced a two-month closure of Sharara which ended in early January. The action was called off after intervention by the government, which apparently promised to do everything in its power to meet their demands.
One of the leaders of the blockade, Mahmoud Al-Ansari, said that the latest closure was sparked by negligence and “phoney promises” on the part of the authorities. He said that the group had twice withheld resuming the protest in the hope that the government would stay true to its word.
He said that the protesters, who were still demanding the removal of the local council, now had additional demands, focussing on minority rights. [/restrict]