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Oil prices edge upwards on Libya’s unrest

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Oil prices edged higher by nearly 2 percent on Monday after clashes erupted in Libya on Sunday, raising concerns that efforts to restart crude exports could be disrupted.

In recent weeks, oil prices have been low and investors are keenly watching mixed messages coming from OPEC and non-OPEC member states as they prepare to meet informally next week. However, Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro says the two sides are nearing a deal to stabilise markets.

“Most in the market I think seem that the old prices are going to remain, stuck between 40 and 50 dollars a barrel, which clearly implies that very few anticipate that a deal will be struck despite the very strong desire on the part of countries such as Venezuela to get a deal to drive the price up to take the pressure off its beleaguered economy,” said an independent markets analyst.

Clashes in Libya have halted the loading of the first oil cargo from the port of Ras Lanuf in close to two years and raised fears of a new conflict over Libya’s oil resources.

Oil traders are closely monitoring the situation in the north African country, where current production stands at about 300,000 barrels per day.

Reuters

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PM Abiy reiterates Ethiopia’s decision over latest clampdown.

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Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has finally spoken on ongoing anti-corruption and rights abuse clampdown stating that there was not going to be any backing down let alone retreat.

A statement from the Abiy’s office issued in Amharic tasked citizens to rally behind the development as a means of ridding the country of lawlessness and criminal elements.

State-affiliated FBC reported that the statement titled, ‘Let’s Fight (the) Cancer,’ said the government was bent on bringing people behind injustices to book.



The statement said the underlying objective of recent arrests was to get rid of Ethiopia criminals. “… criminals do not care about ethnicity, country, or morality; they only care for themselves.

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“The key to justice is to create a system for innocent citizens to live in freedom and dignity while criminals are held accountable and punished in accordance with the law,” the statement read in part.

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Since early this week, authorities have announced the arrest of over sixty former military and intelligence officials arrested in connection with rights abuse in prisons and gross corruption in the military run business conglomerate, Metals and Engineering Corporation, MetEC.

A former head of MetEC, Kinfe Dagnew; and a former intelligence chiefs, Tekleberhan Woldearegay and Yared Zerihun have all been detained and put before courts in the capital, Addis Ababa.

Head of security at the state monopoly, Ethio Telecom, Gudeta Olana, has also been arrested as has head of the entity and brother of ex-MetEC boss, Essayas Dagnew.

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New Zealand denies refusing refugees with holiday visas entry.

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New Zealand’s Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, on Friday, rejected allegations that the country’s government was blocking refugees who wished to travel into the country from Nauru on visitor visas.

Nauru’s president, Baron Waqa, also claimed in an interview with Australian media that he had also personally brokered a deal for New Zealand to accept 80 refugees currently located on the island.



“It’s incorrect to say that there is some kind of agreement for 80 specific individuals to take residence or visit,’’ Ardern told media at the East Asia Summit in Singapore.

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“The request did not ask about whether refugees could visit New Zealand on holiday visas,’’ he added.

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The country assessed all applications for visitor visas on a case-by-case basis. This applies regardless of a person’s country of origin or nationality.

The country is under pressure to transfer the remaining 30 children from the island.

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