The European Union lifted sanctions on Friday against six Libyan ports, allowing humanitarian relief and trade to resume to the nation in the wake of the violent revolt against the regime of Muammar Gaddafi.
The EU listed six ports — Tripoli, Al Khoma, Brega, Ras Lanuf, Zawia and Zuwara — among 28 entities in Libya, including oil companies and banks, no longer subject to the sanctions Brussels imposed as Gaddafi sought to maintain control of the Middle Eastern nation.
The action means shipping lines, forwarders and shippers can resume moving goods into a country that’s been torn apart and isolated during several months of battles between rebels and forces loyal to Gaddafi. The United Nations humanitarian coordinator for Libya says the country is critically short of basic supplies, including water, food and medicine.
Rebel authorities in Tripoli said this week they had opened the port there and Maersk Line announced it would resume service to Libya starting Sept. 8.
Parts of the country, including the capital of Tripoli, have returned to stability following heavy fighting in recent weeks. But fighting is still going on in some parts of Libya and civil structures, including governmental entities and supply lines, are still being constructed.