Last updated: 9 September, 2011

Dutch unblock $2bn frozen assets for NTC

The Netherlands received permission Friday to unfreeze two billion dollars (1.4 billion euros) in Libyan assets and send them to the National Transitional Council, its foreign affairs ministry said.

“Today we received authorisation from the United Nations to release two billion dollars in Libyan money held in Dutch accounts and send it to Libya,” Ward Bezemer, a spokesman for the Dutch foreign minister told AFP.

The savings, from the Central Bank of Libya and belonging to Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi’s regime, are taken from a total of 3.1 billion euros frozen in March by the Dutch government in line with EU sanctions imposed against Libya.

“The money will go today,” the spokesman said, but he did not know when it would arrive in Libya.

Bezemer said the money would be used for humanitarian purposes, to buy food and water and to pay wages.

The Dutch government, which recognised the NTC in July as the “legitimate representative of the Libyan people”, in August gave the World Health Organisation (WHO) 100 million euros in frozen Libyan assets, to buy medicine for the Libyan people.