Police disperse protesters at entrance to Iraq’s Nahr Bin Omar oilfield

About 150 protesters gathered at the main entrance to Iraq’s giant Nahr Bin Omar oilfield in the southern oil hub of Basra. (File/AFP)
Updated 02 September 2018
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Police disperse protesters at entrance to Iraq’s Nahr Bin Omar oilfield

  • About 150 protesters gathered at the main entrance to Iraq’s giant Nahr Bin Omar oilfield in the southern oil hub of Basra
  • Production from Nahran Bin Omar now stands at around 44,000 barrels per day

BASRA: Police used tear gas to disperse around 150 protesters at the main entrance to Iraq’s giant Nahr Bin Omar oilfield on Sunday, police sources said, amid growing unrest in southern cities over poor public services and corruption.
Officials at the field in the southern oil hub of Basra said operations were running normally.
Production from Nahr Bin Omar, which is operated by the state-run Basra Oil Co., now stands at around 44,000 barrels per day, oilfield officials said.
On Friday, hundreds of Iraqi protesters stoned and tried to break into the provincial government headquarters in the southern oil hub of Basra demanding better public services and an end to pervasive corruption. Around 3,000 people gathered there again on Sunday and set fire to tires outside.
Protesters threatened to break into the field if the government did not respond to their demands to improve basic services and address their complaints over Basra’s drinking water, which residents say is undrinkable due to high salt levels.
“We will not allow the oilfield to operate unless we get clean water. No services, no jobs and now no clean water. We are fed up,” said Hassan Ali, a protest organizer.
Iraqi political blocs are attempting to form a coalition government after a May 12 parliamentary election tainted by allegations of fraud.
Oil exports from Basra account for more than 95 percent of OPEC producer Iraq’s state revenues. Any potential disruptions to production could severely impact Iraq’s limping economy.
Police also dispersed protesters who tried to prevent trucks moving on a main road to the east of Basra which leads to a border crossing with Iran, customs and police officials said.


45 people dead as overloaded ferry sinks in Tigris River, Iraq

Updated 8 min 36 sec ago
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45 people dead as overloaded ferry sinks in Tigris River, Iraq

  • Most of the casualties on the ferry were women and children who could not swim
  • The rescue team is still retrieving survivors and has rescued 12 people so far

MOSUL: Forty-five people died when an overloaded ferry sank in the Tigris river near Mosul in Iraq, Iraq's Interior Ministry said on Thursday.
Most of the casualties on the ferry were women and children who could not swim, said the head of Mosul's Civil Defence Authority, Husam Khalil.
The rescue team is still retrieving survivors and has rescued 12 people so far, Khalil added.