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US doesn't believe the 'report' of Kirkuk oil going to Iran

By Rudaw 3/7/2018
Bijan Namdar Zangeneh, Iran's petroleum minister, speaks to Rudaw at the OPEC conference in Vienna, Austria, on June 22, 2018.
Bijan Namdar Zangeneh, Iran's petroleum minister, speaks to Rudaw at the OPEC conference in Vienna, Austria, on June 22, 2018.

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — The United States disputed the "report" of Kirkuk oil being transferred to Iran, despite the country's oil minister confirming receipt of "Kirkuk oil to Iran" in June.


"I want to make this clear, we can't confirm that report. We've seen that report. We just can't confirm," State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert told reporters on Tuesday.


The US government was asked the question in light of sanctions against entities dealing with the Iranian regime. Iraq's oil sector is state-owned.


"We have started to receive the Kirkuk oil to Iran. I hope to be able to continue it as the program we have agreed to with the oil ministry of Iraq," Iranian Minister Bijan Namdar Zangeneh told Rudaw correspondent Zinar Shino at the OPEC conference in Vienna on June 22.


The deal between Baghdad and Tehran sends 30,000 bpd of Kirkuk's oil to Iran by tanker truck to a refinery in Kermanshah. In return, Iran sends the same amount of oil to southern Iraq — again putting the Iraqi government in violation of US sanctions.


Zangeneh added that Iran's exports of Kirkuk crude could increase 10-fold.


"But for continuation of this swap, and to we need to increase the level of this swap, we need to build a pipeline between Kirkuk and Iran," emphasized Zangeneh. "Currently it's at 30,000 bpd, could be increased it to more than 300."


The initial talks between Iraq's State Organization for Marketing of Oil (SOMO) and Tehran began in November. Iraqi Oil Minister Jabar al-Luaibi confirmed the deal to Reuters in January. 


The United States would like to see Iranian oil exports at zero.


"Just spoke to King Salman of Saudi Arabia and explained to him that, because of the turmoil & dysfunction in Iran and Venezuela, I am asking that Saudi Arabia increase oil production, maybe up to 2,000,000 barrels, to make up the difference...Prices to high! He has agreed!" tweeted US President Trump on Saturday.


"These are exaggerated statements that can never be implemented," President Rouhani told reporters in response to Trump in Bern, AFP reported on Tuesday.


At the forefront of talks was the nuclear deal.


"Such a scenario would mean the US was imposing its imperialist policy in flagrant violation of international law," added Rouhani.


"This is really a baseless fantasy," he said, condemning an "unjust" scenario where Iran is not allowed to export crude, but other OPEC countries are.


The oil-rich Kirkuk province came under Iraqi federal control in October 2017 when Iranian-backed Hashd al-Shaabi paramilitaries in Iraq and the Iraqi army gained control of the city and its oil fields.  


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The USA is delirant | 4/7/2018
The American administration is not willing to believe that Iraq is under Iranian control, it does not believe that Turkey is an enemy of the west, the American administration does not believe that Kurds exist at all, it does not believe that the Kurds faught and defeated the Islamic State both in Iraq and in Syria. America does believe that the Kurds must be exterminated. The American dogmas are montruous, indeed.
The USA is delirant | 4/7/2018
The US has allowed Iran to enter Iraq, and it has offered Russia the opportunity to occupy Syria. Europe can not rely on America, otherwise its security is at risk.America will support Turkey to invade Greece and Austria.
Pedro Da Costa | 4/7/2018
The U.S.loves to be cheated,betrayed and humiliated by its enemies like Turks,Arabs and Iranians.Trump is very agressive at groping defenseless women but he is a coward when he is cheated,humiliated and threatened by Turkey,Iran and Iraq.
Pedro Da Costa | 4/7/2018
Trump is recklessly aggressive with the weak and defenseless people like the women he abused and the poor latin immigrants he is pesecuting.He will finally surrender to Iran and Turkey because he is a cowerd surrounded by incompetent team and with no moral orientation whatsoever.
Zangane | 4/7/2018
The American admiunistration is lying, obviously.
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