On 26 February, the US imposed sanctions on several Libyan, Maltese and Egyptian firms, traders and ships reportedly participating in oil smuggling out of Libya. The US Treasury has alleged that a Malta-based network has gained more than US$36 million through illicit oil smuggling out of Zuwara to Europe in 2016. The sanctions have targeted 6 individuals (four Maltese, one Libyan and one Egyptian), 21 Libyan and Maltese companies, and 7 Maltese vessels.
On 23 February, representatives from the US Secretary of State and the Government of National Accord (GNA) Ministry of Foreign Affairs signed a cultural property protection Memorandum of Understanding to impose restrictions on the import of Libyan cultural property to the US. The new sanctions and MoU maintain the US’s focus on counter-terrorism priorities in Libya.