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On the 31st of July 2015 and 18th of January 2016 the EU adopted the following legislative instruments concerning restrictive measures against Libya:

  • EU Council Decision (CFSP) 2015/1333 of 31st July 2015 repealing EU Council Decision 2011/137/CFSP;
  • Council Regulation (EU) 2016/44 of 18th January 2016 repealing Regulation (EU) No. 204/2011;

The Circular No. 9/2016 issued by the Department of Merchant Shipping (DMS) summarises the restrictive measures of the aforementioned legislative instruments.  Ships flying the Cyprus flag may not be used to supply or transport to or from Libya any arms, ammunition or similar goods, armed personnel or equipment that could be used for internal repression. Nevertheless, there are exemptions for equipment planned to be used only for humanitarian or protective purposes and for use by UN personnel, media and humanitarian representatives, development workers and associated personnel.

Arms and related material:

The transportation by ships flying the Cyprus flag from and to Libya of arms and related material, including weapons and ammunition, military vehicles and equipment, paramilitary equipment, spare parts for the aforementioned, as well as equipment that is intended to be used for internal repression in Libya is strictly prohibited. Furthermore, ships flying the Cyprus flag are not allowed to transport from and to Libya armed mercenary personnel.

Crude-oil transportation:

It is prohibited to load, transport or discharge crude oil from Libya on vessels flying the Cyprus flag or the flag of any other EU member-state unless authorised by the competent authority of the particular member-state following a consultation with the Government of Libya focal point. In Cyprus, the competent authority is the DMS.


According to Article 4 of EU Council Decision (CFSP) 2015/1333 EU member-states are obliged to inspect their ports and airports following their national authorities and legislations. However, they need to be consistent with international law. That is to say, vessels bound to or from Libya are subject to inspection if they are coming to Cyprus.

Pre-arrival and pre-departure:

Following the provisions of 4(4) of EU Council Decision (CFSP) 2015/1333, ships transporting cargo to and from Libya are obliged to provide all the necessary pre-arrival or pre-departure information for all goods brought into or out of Cyprus.


Article 10 of EU Council Decision (CFSP) 2015/1333, provides that vigilance should be exercised when launching business activities with companies formed in Libya or subject to Libya’s jurisdiction, in order to prevent business operations that might lead to violence and the use of force against civilians.

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