At least 22 Libyan soldiers were killed today in a protracted gunbattle at the al-Sidra port, where rebels in speedboats attempted to seize the largest of the country’s oil terminals.
The troops managed to damage three of the speedboats and finally repel the attackers, who were reportedly part of the Libya Dawn faction. A stray rocket set fire to one of the oil tanks on site, however.
Libya Dawn is one of many would-be rulers of Libya, which has faced a flurry of different factions since the NATO-imposed regime change, which installed a government which has struggled to maintain control of even its own parliamentary buildings.
Libya was once a major exporters of oil to Europe, and Italian companies have invested heavily in production there, though instability has meant intermittent outages and the nation rarely producing oil at the levels expected.