Netherlands to unfreeze $2bn in Libyan assets

Netherlands to unfreeze $2bn in Libyan assets The Hague: The Dutch government said on Thursday it was ready to unlock two billion dollars in frozen Libyan assets to help the new interim government in Tripoli put its economy afloat.

"We want to unlock two billion dollars which were frozen," Henk Brons, a spokesman for Prime Minister Mark Rutte, told a news agency.

"It's money that the NTC (rebel National Transitional Council) can use to put the Libyan economy back on its feet."

Brons said the money would be released from a total amount of around 4.4 billion dollars in assets which had been frozen by the Dutch government in line with EU sanctions against fugitive Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

Rutte was taking part in an international conference held in Paris to muster support for the NTC administration set up by the rebels who ousted Gaddafi after a six-months Western-backed struggle.

Similar amounts have been unfrozen by the United States, France and Britain but other countries holding assets from the oil-rich country's ousted regime have so far been reluctant to unlock them.