September 12, 2018 / 2:31 PM / 10 days ago

U.S. sanctions Libyan militia leader over oil attacks -statement

WASHINGTON, Sept 12 (Reuters) - The U.S. Treasury targeted the leader of a Libyan militia with sanctions on Wednesday for directing attacks on oil facilities in the country, it said in a statement.

The Treasury Department said Ibrahim Jadhran damaged peace and stability in Libya by overseeing forces that attacked Libyan oil facilities in the “oil crescent,” a lucrative target for rogue militias and criminals. It said the militia has been the cause of many fatalities in Libya this year.

“Jadhran’s repeated militia attacks on Libya’s oil facilities have done colossal damage to its economy and robbed the Libyan people of billions of dollars in oil revenue,” said Sigal Mandelker, Treasury undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence.

He said Jadhran’s attacks have affected Libyan oil exports since 2013.

Corresponding United Nations sanctions will obligate member states to freeze his assets and ban travel, Treasury said.

Jadhran headed an armed group that blockaded oil crescent terminals for three years before being forced out by the Libyan National Army. He is sought by judicial authorities in Tripoli for the blockades and attempts to export oil independently.

Reporting by Doina Chiacu;

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