UPDATE 5-Oil rises on African supply cuts, U.S. inventory draws
* Libya, South Sudan supply disruptions support oil
* Steep declines in US crude and product inventories - EIA
* Strikes end at French refineries
LONDON, Dec 27 (Reuters) - Brent crude rose towards $113 a barrel on Friday as civil unrest in Africa cut into oil supply while fuel stocks in top consumer the United States declined sharply.
Escalating violence in South Sudan threatened to reduce its crude output further, adding to supply outages in Libya, where production is running at a mere 250,000 barrels per day (bpd).
A mix of militias, tribesmen and political minorities, demanding a greater share of Libya's oil wealth and more political power, have shut most oilfields and ports, cutting oil output from the 1.4 million bpd in July.
Brent climbed 73 cents to $112.71 by 1616 GMT. U.S. crude topped $100 for the first time in two months and was trading at $100.62 a barrel, a gain of $1.07.
Easing concern over product tightness, workers at Total's last striking refinery in France ended their two-week walkout.
"The end of the French refinery strikes is one less risk factor for the holiday period. The risk on Libya has not changed and should be already priced (in)," said Olivier Jakob, an oil analyst at Petromatrix.
"South Sudan carries a risk of getting worse, but with about 220,000 bpd at risk it should not be enough to change the dynamics of the crude oil markets."
Rebels in South Sudan have seized some oil wells in Unity state and captured half the capital of the main oil-producing region as African leaders held talks to avert civil war.
Oil output has already fallen by nearly a fifth to 200,000 barrels per day after the Unity state oilfields shut earlier this week due to fighting.
But an army spokesman said rebels had been defeated in Malakal, the capital of major oil-producing Upper Nile state.
Adding support were steep declines in stockpiles of crude and products in the United States - suggesting stronger demand in the world's top oil consumer.
Crude inventories dropped last week by 4.73 million barrels, the fourth straight weekly decline, data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration showed. Analysts had expected a decline of 2.3 million barrels.
Distillate stocks - including heating oil - fell by 1.85 million barrels, versus forecasts of a 400,000-barrel decline. Gasoline fell by 614,000 barrels, versus a forecast build of 1.3 million barrels.
A fall in U.S. jobless claims and stronger retail sales reinforced a more robust outlook for the world's largest economy next year.
Some analysts, however, do not expect this to translate into stronger fuel demand due to the use of more fuel-efficient vehicles and abundant natural gas.
(Additional reporting by Florence Tan in Singapore; Editing by William Hardy and Dale Hudson)