Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

Madagascar political crisis: top court orders formation of unity government

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Ireland's abortion referendum

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Weinstein in court; Ireland abortion vote; Italy's populist takeover

Read more

YOU ARE HERE

Sugar and spice: The flavours of the French Caribbean

Read more

FRENCH CONNECTIONS

The French are so rude! Or are they?

Read more

REVISITED

Video: After key battle, Syrian town of Kobane looks to the future

Read more

ENCORE!

The writing's on the wall: Revolutionary posters from May 68

Read more

REPORTERS

'We heard there might be a civil war': May 68 seen from abroad

Read more

#THE 51%

U.S. mid-terms: Record number of women running and winning primaries

Read more

Africa france 24

France warns of IS group push to grab Libya oil fields

© AFP / HO / WelayatTarablos| An image made available by propaganda Islamist media on February 18, 2015, allegedly shows IS militants parading in a street in Libya's coastal city of Sirte.

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2015-12-14

French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Monday that the Islamic State group was spreading from its stronghold on the Libyan coast to the interior of the country, with the aim of getting access to oil wells.

"They are in Sirte, their territory extends 250 kilometres (155 miles) along the coast, but they are starting to penetrate the interior and to be tempted by access to oil wells and reserves," Le Drian told RTL radio.

Le Drian’s declaration came after world powers backed on Sunday the formation of a national unity government in Libya to prevent IS extremists from extending their territory.

US Secretary of State John Kerry and Italian counterpart Paolo Gentiloni, joined by UN envoy Martin Kobler, were optimistic that the majority of the representatives of Libya’s two rival governments would sign a unity deal on Dec. 16.

Representatives from 17 countries including Egypt, Germany, Russia, Turkey, and China signed a joint statement calling for an immediate ceasefire and promising to cut off contacts with factions that do not sign the deal.

Fifteen Libyans from different groups also attended the meeting. Past deadlines have slipped amid internal disagreements in the sprawling, oil-producing country rife with armed groups.

With around 3,000 fighters, the Islamic State group has solidified its foothold in Libya by taking over the central city of Sirte. It has attacked a hotel and a prison in Tripoli, oil fields and military checkpoints, and issued a video of its militants beheading 21 Egyptian Christians on a Libyan beach.

The UN brokered agreement would allow a new Libyan government to ask for international military assistance to fight the Islamic State group’s growing presence.

(FRANCE 24 with REUTERS, AFP)

Date created : 2015-12-14

  • LIBYA

    Global powers call for unity government and ceasefire in Libya

    Read more

  • LIBYA

    Four years on, Gaddafi's legacy plagues chaotic Libya

    Read more

  • LIBYA

    Libya's rival governments reach long-awaited peace deal

    Read more

COMMENT(S)