LAA Statement on Russian Manipulation of Libya’s Economy

The Libyan American Alliance (LAA) condemns in the strongest terms Russia’s catastrophic interference in the Libyan economy. Over the last three years, Russia has forged massive amounts of Libyan currency and smuggled them through unofficial groups based in Libya.

On November 1, 2019, Maltese authorities seized a massive shipment of unofficial Libyan currency believed to have been destined for warlord Khalifa Haftar, who has been leading a brutal offensive south of Tripoli since April 4th. The fake currency is believed to have originated from a Russian-owned institution, which has been printing money for the illegitimate Libyan government based in Al-Bayda.

Since 2016, the illegitimate government of Abdullah Al-Thani has printed billions of fake Libyan dinars in Russia, using them to back warlord Khalifa Haftar’s forces and their offensive on Tripoli. This has caused a devastating deterioration of the Libyan economy, exacerbating an already difficult political and humanitarian situation.

We urge the U.S. government, the World Bank, and international allies to increase their pressure on Russia until it ceases this illegal fabrication and all forms of destabilizing interference in Libya.