MOSCOW, May 30. /TASS/. The statements released by the US Department of State about the production of "counterfeit" Libyan dinars by the Russian Goznak printing factory are untenable, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Saturday.
"Those are not Libyan dinars that are forged but the American statements. Russia persistently insists that there is no alternative to a political solution within the framework of broad intra-Libyan dialogue and [calls for] the strict compliance with the resolutions adopted by the international community on Libya," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
The ministry added that dinars printed by Russia's Goznak needed to ensure sustainable operation of Libya's economy and were printed under the 2015 contract approved by the Libyan parliament.
"The contract to print Libyan dinar banknotes was signed in 2015 by the Goznak company (the Russian printing factory - TASS) and the head of Libya’s Central Bank, and approved by Libya’s House of Representatives (parliament). The Libyan side transferred a required prepayment. Implementing its contractual obligation, the Russian company shipped a cargo with printed Libyan banknotes to the city of Tobruk for the Central Bank. Along with this, we proceed from the fact that the above-mentioned money is needed to provide the sustainable functioning of the entire Libyan economy," the ministry said.
The Russian Foreign Ministry added that currently, two Central Banks operate in Libya amid the de-facto diarchy in the country - in Tripoli hosting the Government of National Accord led by Fayez al-Sarraj and in Benghazi. The ministry explained that the head of Benghazi-based Central Bank had been appointed by the House of Representatives, the nationally elected Libyan parliament, and had the necessary international legitimacy.
Apart from that, the Russian Foreign Ministry supported the proposal put forward by Speaker of Libya’s House of Representatives Aqila Saleh on April 23 to immediately stop fighting and step up intra-Libyan talks.
"We believe that its (the proposal’s - TASS) provisions could lay the foundation for the nationwide Libyan consensus under the UN auspices," the ministry stressed.
On May 26, Malta announced a seizure of forged Libyan dinar banknotes worth $1.1 billion, which had been allegedly printed by Russia’s Goznak printing factory. On Saturday, the US Department of State praised the Maltese authorities for that action.