Turkey has begun work to repair a pipeline taking crude oil from northern Iraq to the Mediterranean through its restive southeast and aims to restore flows soon, Reuters reported. The pipeline transport was suspended in mid February over security threats. Turkey’s energy ministry said that explosives had been detonated at several points along the pipeline, most recently in the Idil district of Sirnak province. The Kurdistan region’s Prime Minister, Nechirvan Barzani, said he could not confirm that the suspected Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) was to blame for the outage, Trade Arabia informed.
The pipeline, which has been repeatedly sabotaged in recent months, usually carries some 600,000b/d of crude from Iraq’s autonomous Kurdistan region and the disputed Kirkuk oil fields to the port of Ceyhan for export.
The burden Turkey is taking to repair the pipelines demonstrates how intertwined Iraqi Kurdistan’s economic woes are with the deteriorating security in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast.