A deputy prime minister overseeing the oil industry has issued a sharp rebuke to the largest American oil company operating in Iraq, ExxonMobil, over the company’s reported efforts to expand its oil holdings into the semiautonomous Kurdish region in the country’s north.
The statement from the official, Hussein al-Shahristani, said the central government had cautioned Exxon against pursuing oil deals in Kurdistan, which the government says will remain illegal until long-awaited rules can be worked out to split revenues among Iraq’s fractious regions.
Mr. Shahristani’s office issued the statement a day after The Financial Times reported that Exxon, based in Irving, Tex., and the United States’ largest petroleum company, had become the first major international oil operator to sign a contract in the Kurdistan region — a move the company has neither confirmed nor denied.
If Exxon did indeed sign a deal in Kurdistan, it is wading into a central controversy that has dogged Iraq since the American invasion.
TVNL Comment: Oh, stop complaining. Why do you think the US invaded you in the first place? Just asking.....