Crude oil prices rose in Asian trade on Friday, after the United Nations (UN) approved the imposition of a no-fly zone over Libya, raising fresh fears over oil exports from the country.
The light sweet crude for April delivery gained $1.65 to $103.07 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude was up $1.56 to $116.46 a barrel on the ICE futures exchange in London.
Crude oil prices have increased 13 percent since the beginning of the year, following continued unrest in some Arab nations.
Libya’s oil output has dropped by more-than two thirds since the rebellion against Gadhafi began in February, AFP reported last week, quoting Shukri Ghanem, chief of National Oil Corp. Oil production has been reduced to just 500,000 barrels per day from 1.6 million barrels.
The U.N. Security Council on Thursday voted 10-0 to approve a no-fly zone over Libya and all necessary measures to protect civilians from attacks by forces led by Muammar Gaddafi.
The Arab League, a voluntary association of nations, last week stated its support for a no fly zone. The countries include Egypt, Iraq, Saudia Arabia, and Bahrain.
President Barack Obama and his administration urged Gaddafi to leave the country and said all options were being considered on how to deal with the crisis.