RealNews

Iraq Stops South Oil Output After Militia Threat

Iraq stopped oil production from its southern oil fields Monday after a Shi’ite Muslim uprising led by radical cleric Moqtada al-Sadr spread to the oil sector for the first time since the late-June handover of power to Iraqi authorities. An Iraqi oil official said militiamen from Sadr’s Mehdi Army threatened to sabotage operations by the state Southern Oil Company, based in Basra city. “Pumping from the southern oil fields to storage tanks at Basra was stopped today after threats made by Al-Sadr,” the official told Reuters. “It will remain stopped until the threat is over.” The closure is the first significant shutdown in Iraq’s main southern oil sector since the handover of power to Iraq’s interim government on June 28. Sabotage attacks shortly before the handover had cut exports sharply. Full Story

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