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US sees no 'major disruption' to Iraqi oil supplies

Published on Jun 19, 2014 6:44 AM

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Washington has not seen any major disruption in Iraqi oil supplies amid a militant assault on a large refinery, a US official said on Wednesday, but warned Iraq may have to import fuel for its own needs.

Oil markets were spooked on Wednesday as militants from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) attacked the Baiji oil refinery, north of Baghdad, as they pressed an assault which has already seen them capture a large swath of northern Iraq.

Iraqi officials said security forces controled the refinery, but clashes were ongoing and several tanks containing refined products caught fire.

“The refinery produces for domestic consumption,” State Department spokesman Jen Psaki told reporters, adding production had already been halted for a few days “due to a combination of technical and security reasons.”

A large plume of smoke rises from what is said to be Baiji oil refinery in Baiji, northern Iraq, in this still image taken from an amateur video posted on a social media website June 18, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
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