The Sudanese army has seized a city in southern Libya that is the gateway to oilfields crucial to rebel hopes of developing fiscal independence.
Officers overseeing the no-fly zone enforced by Nato over Libya mentioned the Sudanese move north of border had not encountered resistance from troops loyal to Col Muammar Gaddafi.
Since the February uprising in opposition to his routine, the Libyan leader's forces have been concentrated around Tripoli, the capital Sirte, the eastern city that is Col Gaddafi's birthplace and Sebha, the desert outpost exactly where the dictator grew up.
Officers explained control of the city of Kufra and close by military base granted the Sudanese a crucial strategic foothold in between the regime and the opposition Transitional National Council (TNC) which holds the eastern seaboard and a collection of rebel enclaves.
The Sudanese have not disrupted attempts to resume oil production on close by southern oilfields.
"Our surveillance exhibits that they are not shifting oil, so its not about income in the short expression," mentioned one Western official. "The business oil companies monitoring is reporting that there has been no movement of oil out of Libya.
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"The Gaddafi army was coming in and getting out the oilfields each time the rebels start off pumping oil. They have dismantled the fields very meticulously so the rebels want security down there. Plainly there requirements to be tribal assist but the Sudanese could make it way too dangerous for Gaddafi's intervention as effectively."
The last assault on the Mislah and Sarir oilfields took place on June 12, just days just before the deployment of Sudanese forces to Kufra.
Rebel spokesmen explained they hoped to create up to 250,000 barrels for each day from the oilfields and pump it along a pipeline to the Marsa al-Haringa depot in the vicinity of Tobruk ( via telegraph.co.uk ).