Libyan rebel council promises France 35% in oil in exchange for support, NTC denies deal
At the beginning of the armed conflict in Libya, France reached an agreement with the Libyan National Transitional Council (NTC) to control 35% of Libyan oil in exchange for supporting the rebels, the Liberation daily reported on Thursday.
Liberation said it has a letter from the NTC dated April 3 to the Emir of Qatar of a deal "to assign 35% of crude oil to France in exchange for its total and permanent support of our Council."
Later NTC spokesman Mahmoud Shammam said it was a joke and that such a deal was unthinkable, Reuters reported on Thursday. "It's a joke. It's false," Shammam said, RIA Novosti reported.
French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said on Thursday that he "had no knowledge" of such a letter. However he said it was "logical" that countries like France that helped the National Transitional Council take power should take part in the country's reconstruction.
Russia on Thursday recognized the NTC as the only legitimate power in the country, the Foreign Ministry said.