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November 19, 2015 3:57 pm

Iraqi Kurds Smuggling Oil Through Israel to Circumvent Baghdad

avatar by David Daoud

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Iraqi Kurdistan. Photo: Wikipedia.

Iraqi Kurdistan. Photo: Wikipedia.

Kurdistan’s semi-autonomous government in Iraq (KRG) has been smuggling oil through Israel in order to bypass sales being monitored by the central government in Baghdad, Al-Jazeera reported on Thursday.

KRG Minister of Natural Resources Ashti Hawrami said that the oil was being smuggled out of the country in order to raise the necessary funds to enable the Kurdish militias to continue fighting ISIS.

He said that one of the many methods used by the Kurds to avoid detection by the central government in Baghdad was funneling the oil through Israel. The purchasers of Kurdish oil took tankers to the Israeli port of Ashkelon, where they were loaded into storage facilities and later resold to European buyers, according to Al-Jazeera.

The subterfuge was necessary, said Hawrami, because the central government in Baghdad had been financially discriminating against the KRG for a long time, and when the Kurds did not receive the 17% of the Iraqi national budget to which they are entitled, they started calculating alternative ways of making money, such as selling oil independently.

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  • Florres

    How does anyone who is anti-Israel not hate Turkey a thousand times more and live with himself?

    Oh yeah anti-Semitism is the greatest evil.

  • shloime

    what an odd story! despite the fact that the kurdish peshmerga are the only effective fighting force facing isis with “boots on the ground”, the united states seems determined to prevent them from selling their oil to buy arms for their fighters: .

    sometimes it’s hard to tell whether the american administration is for or against isis.