U.S. Embassy Tripoli, Libya

The United States was recognized by the semi-independent government in Tripoli in 1796, but permanent diplomatic relations were not established until modern Libya’s independence following World War II. From 1980 until 2006, the United States did not have a functioning embassy in Libya, although relations were not formally severed.

The United States supports an immediate end to Libya’s ongoing conflict through mediation efforts under the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL). The United States is committed to ensuring a stable and prosperous Libya, and in cooperation with the UN and other international partners supports Libya’s democratic transition, including through national elections. The United States is focused on promoting the ability of Libyans to achieve a unified and inclusive government that can both secure the country and meet the economic and humanitarian needs of the Libyan people.

The United States is committed to providing targeted assistance to build Libyan institutions, promote political reconciliation, and increase Libya’s capacity to govern effectively by holding free and fair elections, securing Libya’s territory, and managing public finances transparently and responsibly. Investing in Libya’s future will help advance Libya’s democratic transition, promote stability, and strengthen the U.S.-Libya partnership. The United States works with the national government, municipal councils, entrepreneurs, and a range of civil society groups, including those representing women and marginalized communities, in their efforts to improve Libyan lives. Since 2011, the United States has provided more than $840 million in assistance for Libya.

The energy sector is central to Libya’s economy, and oil and gas revenues constitute the principal source of foreign exchange, underscoring the importance for the sector to continue operating nationwide. Many U.S. companies, particularly in the energy sector, have long-standing investments in Libya. Two-way trade in goods between the United States and Libya totaled more than $1.1 billion in 2019. The United States also has signed a trade and investment framework agreement with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, of which Libya is a member.

The U.S. embassy in Tripoli suspended operations in 2014. A core group of Embassy Tripoli personnel are currently working from the U.S. Embassy in Tunis.


United States Department of State, Office of the Historian and Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs

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