The Ministry of Oil and Gas in Libya reaffirmed on Wednesday its rejection to join organizations or forums attended by "the Zionist entity or in which Israel is a member, especially in the fields related to the oil and gas sector."

This came in a statement after the disclosure of a meeting between the suspended Minister of Foreign Affairs Najla al-Mangoush and Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen in Rome, under the auspices of the Italian Foreign Minister.

The meeting sparked widespread reactions in Libya, where popular protests erupted in the streets of the capital, Tripoli, and its suburbs, on Sunday evening, rejecting normalization with Israel. The protests spread to other cities, where young men blocked roads and burned tires, waving the Palestinian flag.

The statement of the Ministry of Oil and Gas confirmed that the "established values and constants of the honorable Libyan people are against the Zionist entity, which represents crimes of occupation of holy lands, violation of the sanctities of the Islamic nation, brutality against the brotherly Palestinian people, and the practice of the worst systems of racial discrimination in history."

The Ministry said that “compliance with the legislation and laws in force, adherence to them, and not violating them (especially in this case Law No. (62) of 1957 and its amendments, which criminalize dealing with Israel) always represented the safe way, as it constituted the conscience of society and the behavior it had.