An elderly bunkering tanker was arrested and held by the Libyan Coast Guard on Saturday, suspected of smuggling fuel. 12 crew – a mix of Turkish, Azerbaijanis and Ukrainians – have been held too.
The 1975-built, Sierra Leone-flagged tanker was carrying 1.6m litres of gasoline.
Libya, in a fierce civil war for more than five years, has seen oil output slashed. The internationally recognised government has repeatedly warned of severe penalties for anyone caught taking oil from the country without official permission. This stance has even seen tankers bombed by the nation’s airforce.