Libya has been struggling on the brink of an economic collapse since 2011, and it seems that nothing is going to change soon.
A recent article by The Washington Post explains many of the challenges facing the Libyan people, from an inability to withdraw cash from ATMs to kidnappings and ransoms.
"At the moment, it's very difficult for any improvement for Libya's economy," Federica Saini Fasanotti, a non-resident fellow at The Brookings Institution, told Maghreb News Wire. "The country is in a deep crisis that touches not only economy but security and the basic needs for citizens."
Since the death of Muammar Gadhafi, the country that had been unified and successful economically has been torn apart by a failing economy and increasing crime to the point that residents no longer leave their homes after dark for fear of being attacked, robbed or worse.
For Fasanotti, the political challenges and economic dilemma go hand-in-hand.
"In this situation it is practically impossible to act in the economy sector," Fasanotti said. "Economy, security, politics go in osmosis. If you don't have one, you cannot think you can implement the others. They have to proceed strictly together."
What Fasanotti believes about the interconnectedness of economy and security echoes the news reports of individuals being held for ransom by rebel groups that are trying to seize government control. Furthermore, individuals with any signs of wealth have admitted to hiding away their valuables, such as modern electronics and new cars, as they do not wish to attract attention or put themselves in danger.
"I am not very optimistic at the moment, frankly," Fasanotti said. "But things can change if Libyans and the international community believe it."
Fasnotti called on Libyans and others to acknowledge the status quo, stop complaining about the situation, and then work for substantial, positive change.
"Libyans should understand that they really have to put aside their controversy and go on for the good of their country, while the international community should stop supporting one side or the other and give the Libyans what they do not have: expertise," Fasanotti said.
When asked what the Libyan and Venezuelan conflicts share in common, Fasanotti said their situations are on very different scales due to the sizes of the countries, their culture and history
"They are absolutely incomparable," Fasanotti said. "The only thing they have in common is the threesome of oil, corruption (and) criminality."