Last Update 21:11
Friday, 20 September 2019

IS group torches oil wells in northern Iraq: Officials

Reuters , Monday 2 Oct 2017
Views: 1554
Views: 1554

Islamic State militants set fire to three oil wells near Hawija, west of the oil city of Kirkuk, one of two areas of Iraq still under their control, military and oil officials said on Monday.

Iraqi security forces were using bulldozers to control the fires started by the militants in the early hours of Saturday to slow the advance of U.S.-backed Iraqi forces and Shi'ite militia groups towards Hawija town, military officials said.

The Allas oilfield, 35 km (20 miles) south of Hawija, was one of the main sources of revenue for Islamic State, which in 2014 declared a caliphate in parts of Syria and Iraq.

"Terrorists are trying to use the rising smoke to avert air strikes while retreating from the area towards Hawija," said army Colonel Mohammed al-Jabouri.

Military officials said the fire had been brought under control at one of the wells, while the other two were still burning. They said it would take about three days to put out the fires.

Oil officials from the state-run North Oil Company said it was still too risky to send its crews in to assess damage at the wells as militants may have left bombs and landmines.

Iraq launched an offensive on Sept. 21 to dislodge Islamic State from Hawija.

Islamic State, the ultra-hardline Sunni Muslim group, has lost control of all the oilfields it once controlled in the north of Iraq.


Short link:


Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.

© 2010 Ahram Online.