Middle EastTankers

Two tankers caught in Libya smuggling oil

Libyan naval forces captured two ships on Friday suspected of smuggling oil after gun battles lasting several hours west of the capital Tripoli.

Ayoub Qassem, a spokesman for the Libyan naval forces, said the Ukraine-flagged tanker Routa and a vessel with an unspecified African nation’s flag named Stark were captured early Friday.

“Clashes lasted for three hours, but the two tankers were successfully seized,” Qassem said.

The six-year civil war that has torn Libya apart has seen many merchant ships and seafarers in the cross hairs when passing through Libyan waters.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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