Libya’s Prime Minister Ali Zeidan said the military will bomb a North Korea-flagged tanker that has loaded crude oil at a rebel-held port.
The 37,000-tonne Morning Glory docked Saturday at the port of Es Sider and loaded $36 million of crude oil.
The Libyan navy on Sunday sent boats to stop the tanker from leaving the port.
The rebels controlling Es Sider said any attack on the Morning Glory would be “a declaration of war.”
Rebels now control three eastern ports in Libya, a member of OPEC.
The rebel “prime minister,” Abb-Rabbo al-Barassi, said in a statement that “harming any tanker or sending navy ships into the waters of Cyrenaica.”
Cyrenaica is the name of eastern Libya. Rebels there want a share of oil revenues.
In January, the Libyan navy shot at a Maltese-flagged tanker trying to load oil in Es Sider, chasing it away.
Protests at Libya’s oil fields and port facilities have reduced the country’s production from 1.4 million bpd in mid-2013 to 230,000 bpd now.