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Iraq: Armed groups take control of western oil pipelines

Armed groups have taken control of the majority of oil pipelines in western Iraq, an Iraqi official said today.

In a statement to Anadolu agency, the Undersecretary of the Iraqi Oil Ministry Mutasim Akram said: "We lost control of most of the oil pipelines in the western provinces. Terrorist groups have taken over in order to steal the oil."

Akram said the ministry is trying to ensure the delivery of petroleum products to all the provinces using tankers.

Since Tuesday events in cities and provinces to the north-west of Iraq, Salahuddin, Nineveh, Diyala, Kirkuk, have come under the control of armed groups, including ISIS, following the withdrawal of the Iraqi army from these provinces.

The military has been engaged in six months of fierce battles in Iraq with elements of the organisation known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS), which is linked to Al-Qaeda, in most areas of the Anbar province. Special forces are trying to retake the city of Fallujah which had already fallen under the control of ISIS.

 

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