Port of Tobruk

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Port of Tobruk
ميناء طبرق
Tobruk port 23.jpg
The port of Tobruk prior to the Libyan Civil War
Country Libya
Location Tobruk
Coordinates 32°04′41″N 23°58′59″E / 32.078°N 23.983°E / 32.078; 23.983Coordinates: 32°04′41″N 23°58′59″E / 32.078°N 23.983°E / 32.078; 23.983
Opened 1986
Owned by Socialist Ports Company
Type of harbor Coastal Breakwater
Size 1,000,000 m2 (11,000,000 sq ft)
Piers 13
Anchorage depth 14–15.2 m (45 ft 11 in–49 ft 10 in)
Cargo pier depth 4.9–6.1 m (16 ft 1 in–20 ft 0 in)
Oil terminal depth 7.1–9.1 m (23 ft 4 in–29 ft 10 in)
Vessel arrivals 120
Annual cargo tonnage 600000 tons
Dock Density 1025
Main export crude oil
Oil traffic 220000 barrels
Socialist Ports Company

The Port of Tobruk (Arabic: ميناء طبرق‎‎) is a port located at Tobruk, Libya. Opened in 1986, it is located in Eastern Libya near the Egyptian border - about 450 km (280 mi) east of Benghazi.[1] The entrance to the main channel into the port is between Tobruk point ( 32°04′N 024°01′E / 32.067°N 24.017°E / 32.067; 24.017 ) and the point of Marsa Ummash Shawush.[2]


Tobruk was formerly the historic settlement of Antipyrgos, offering a major harbor for the hellenic states.[3] The port has never been systematically surveyed for archeological findings to evaluate the use of the port during this time.[3]

During the Italo-Turkish War in 1911, Tobruk was the landing point for 35,000 Italian soldiers under the command of Carlo Canvey.[4]

During World War II, the port, one of the most valuable deep water ports in North Africa, was fortified by 12,000 British and Indian troops and 14,000 Australian troops. Starting in April 1941 and ending in November 1941, German general Erwin Rommel surrounded the port besieging the troops resulting in the Siege of Tobruk.[5]

During the 1960s, high viscocity oil from the Sarir field was piped to Tobruk for loading on vessels, because the oil was not safe to load at sea.[6]

As a result of the Libyan Civil War, the port was temporarily closed due to clashes between protestors and government forces and reopened on 28 February 2011 for oil exports.[7] The port re-opened soon after the civil war ended. As of August 2014, all port traffic from the Port of Benghazi will be diverted to the port of Tobruk due to the closoure of the port in Benghazi as a direct result of the sustained Post-civil war violence in Libya.[8]


It requires a pilot to enter the port.[2] The port has ten anchorages, with a six-vessel capacity each.[2] As of 2010, the port had three cargo handling cranes, one with a 50-80 ton capacity and two with 30-40 ton capacity.[9]


  1. ^ Tobruk port
  2. ^ a b c "Tobruk Port | Unishippco.com". www.unishipco.com. Retrieved 2016-10-19. 
  3. ^ a b White, Donald; White, Arthur P. (1996-01-01). "Coastal Sites of Northeast Africa: The Case Against Bronze Age Ports". Journal of the American Research Center in Egypt. 33: 11–30. doi:10.2307/40000602. JSTOR 40000602. 
  4. ^ KOPANSKI, ATAULLAH BOGDAN (1993-01-01). "ISLAM IN ITALY AND IN ITS LIBYAN COLONY (720-1992)". Islamic Studies. 32 (2): 191–204. JSTOR 20840121. 
  5. ^ "The rats of Tobruk | Ergo". ergo.slv.vic.gov.au. Retrieved 2016-10-19. 
  6. ^ Blake, G. H. (1969-01-01). "OIL PRODUCTION IN LIBYA". Geography. 54 (2): 221–223. JSTOR 40566791. 
  7. ^ Libya's eastern port Tobruk opens for oil exports
  8. ^ Gomez, Carla (11 August 2014). "Return of Negrenses from Libya hits snag". Bacolod City, Philippines: Daily Star. Retrieved 17 August 2014. 
  9. ^ I, Elferjani, (2015-01-01). "Examination of port performance in a developing economy: A case study of Libyan ports". RMIT University. 

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