Since July 27th, there have been repeated attempted thefts and sabotage attacks on the pipelines that carry crude oil from the Kurdistan Region to Ceyhan in Turkey. This has led to an almost complete stoppage in the flow of crude oil to Ceyhan.
The oil exports via the pipelines are the Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) principal source of revenue and enable the KRG to pay people’s salaries and help the government and people of the Kurdistan Region to resist the grave challenges the Region is currently facing.
The continuous attacks and theft serve only to damage the economic viability and the security of the Kurdistan Region as it faces the unprecedented threats from Islamic State terrorists, the budget cuts imposed on the Region by the federal government in Baghdad, and the influx of over 1,800,000 refugees and IDPs.
These recent acts of sabotage within Turkey have cost the KRG over US$250 million, a sum almost equivalent to the entire monthly budget for the salaries of the security forces of Kurdistan (the Asayish, the Interior Ministry forces and the brave Peshmerga on the frontlines) who are defending the people of Kurdistan and Iraq against the forces of terror.
Turkey stands to suffer relatively minor economic damage through the loss of transit fees from the pipeline to Ceyhan. Therefore, some 99 percent of the burden of these attacks is borne alone by the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and its people.
The Ministry of Natural Resources condemns these senseless and irresponsible attacks on the Kurdistan people’s security and welfare and calls upon those involved to cease their actions immediately. Their deeds only benefit the enemies of the Kurdish people.
The people of Kurdistan will hold the thieves and saboteurs and those supporting them to account for all the hardships they cause.