Unprecedented gasoline crisis in Iraqi Kurdistan

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Cars gathered in front of a gas station waiting for gasoline in Duhok, Iraqi Kurdistan, June 20, 2013. Photo: ARA News

ARA News

Duhok, Iraqi Kurdistan – Cities of Iraqi Kurdistan face an unprecedented gasoline crisis, where hundred-meter queues wait for hours in front of gas stations to get the needed gasoline.

The crisis coincides with the deteriorating situations in the Iraqi provinces of Nineveh and Selah al-Dein following the control of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

As a response to the crisis, Iraqi Government allocated 30 liters of gasoline for each car, regardless of its size.

Speaking to ARA News, Renas Doski, a taxi driver in the city of Duhok, north of Iraqi Kurdistan, said: “Gasoline crisis affected my work. I am obliged to queue long hours to get limited amount of gasoline, not enough even for one day. I get 30 liters for two days.”

Following the Parliament’s ratification on the new government list in the Kurdistan Region, Nechirvan Barzani, the Prime Minister of Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), stated earlier this week: “We will hold an urgent meeting with the governors of Erbil (capital of Iraqi Kurdistan), Sulaymaniyah and Duhok to find an efficient solution for this crisis.”

“Gasoline scarcity in Iraqi Kurdistan’s three territories (Erbil, Duhok and Sulaimaniyah) came after ISIL’s control on Beji refinery (the biggest refinery in Iraq located in Selah al-Dein province),” Iraqi Kurdistan’s PM said.

According to PM Barzani, KRG is sending locally-produced oil to the cities of Kerkuk and Mosul, north of Iraq.

Dindar Mohammed, owner of a gas station in Duhok, told ARA News: “Now we get half of the amount we used to get before the crisis.”

“The situation became worse due to people’s fear of complete lack of gasoline in gas stations as well as the rush of thousands of cars from Mosul and other intense areas in Iraq to the Kurdistan Region,” said Mohammed.

KRG has recently exported oil, produced on its land, to Turkey, which created tension between KRG and Baghdad’s Central Government.

 

Reporting by: Bengin Mohammed

Source: ARA News

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