BEIRUT

Middle East

Iraq says southern oil facilities "very, very safe"

Iraq's Oil Minister Abdul Kareem Luaibi (seated) talks to journalists before a meeting of OPEC oil ministers in Vienna June 11, 2014. REUTERS/Heinz-Peter Bader

VIENNA: Iraq's southern oil export facilities, currently its only export outlet, were secure, with shipments now running at around 2.6 million barrels per day, Oil Minister Abdul Kareem Luaibi said Wednesday.

An Al-Qaeda splinter group seized control of the northern Iraqi city of Mosul Tuesday, putting security forces to flight in a spectacular show of strength against the Shi'ite-led Baghdad government.

"All our exports now are from the Basra terminal in the south - and it's a very, very safe area," Luaibi told reporters ahead of an OPEC meeting. Iraq's northern export pipeline, which connects to a Turkish terminal, has been out of action since March after a bomb attack.

Luaibi also said there was better chance of agreement between the central government and the Kurdish region due to the situation in Mosul.

 

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