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Kirkuk Oil Flow at Risk

Kirkuk Oil Flow at RiskKirkuk Oil Flow at Risk

Iraqi oil shipments of about 105,000 barrels a day were halted briefly on Thursday after Kurdish troops seized control of a pumping station in disputed Kirkuk Province and demanded that crude shipments to the country’s central government be stopped. Oil from Kirkuk stopped flowing into a Kurdish-built export pipeline to Turkey after fighters loyal to the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan political party took control of the province’s main pumping station, Najat Hussein, a member of Kirkuk’s oil, energy and industry committee, said by phone. The shipments resumed several hours later, he said, Bloomberg reported. The PUK, one of two parties in the Kurdistan Regional Government, has controlled much of Kirkuk since sending forces to protect oil facilities there after so-called Islamic State militants captured swathes of northern Iraq in 2014.  By seizing the station that controls oil flowing into the export pipeline, the PUK was trying to pressure the federal government to allocate money to Kirkuk from sales of the province’s oil, Hussein said. The PUK will cut exports again if no agreement is reached within one week, he said.  

 

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