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Exxon Deal Brings Iraq, Kurdistan to Brink of Civil War

War over oil in Iraq is a rather old issue, but as Iraq seems to be drawn ever near to an open civil war setting the central government against the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) oil is once again the principle justification.

Oil and the contracts for them, anyway. Exxon Mobil has signed a pact with the KRG to drill in oil fields along the nebulous line of control between the two sides, near Kirkuk and the Maliki government insists it controls this region, in theory though clearly not in practice.

“The prime minister has been clear: If Exxon lays a finger on this territory, they will face the Iraqi army,” noted MP Sami Alaskary, a close aide of Maliki, adding that “we will go to war, for oil and for Iraqi sovereignty.”


Kurdish Troops Fire on Iraqi Military Helicopter as Tensions Soar.

With both sides expressing hope for dialogue while conceding the possibility that Iraq and its northern Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) could be on the brink of a civil war, another incident has occurred near Kirkuk underscoring how close a shooting war might be.

Indeed, shooting is already a reality, with troops from the Kurdish Peshmerga paramilitary opening fire on an Iraqi military helicopter that was flying overhead, reportedly taking pictures of Peshmerga military positions around Kirkuk.


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