IraqMiddle East

Iraqi military spokesman denies capture of Baiji refinery by ISIL

Iraq military spokesman denies capture of Baiji refinery by ISIL

Iraqi military spokesman has denied reports of capture of Baiji oil refinery by the radical militants of the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
Major General Qassim Atta told reporters on Tuesday that, “the (Baiji) refinery is in control of the Iraqi forces”.
Atta’s comments came after some media outlets said Takfiri militants captured Baiji in Salahuddin Province, north of the capital, Baghdad.
Iraq’s Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, also rejected the claims in an interview with Al Jazeera on Tuesday.
Takfiri militants have been attacking Baiji refinery, which produces a third of the country’s oil output, for the past ten days. Earlier reports said that the militants destroyed some stores of oil in the refinery.
The refinery was reportedly shut down last week and many employees had been evacuated because major towns seized by the militants, including the city of Mosul, were no longer being supplied with refined products.
Iraqi forces continue their battle against the ISIL Takfiri group, which is threatening to take its acts of violence to several Iraqi cities, including Baghdad.
On June 10, the ISIL militants took control of Mosul, the capital of Nineveh Province. They later took control of the city of Tikrit, located about 140 kilometers (87 miles) northwest of Baghdad.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has said that the country’s security forces would confront the terrorists, calling the seizure of Mosul a “conspiracy.” The Iraqi prime minister has also blamed Saudi Arabia and Qatar for the security crisis and growing terrorism in his country, denouncing Riyadh as a major supporter of global terrorism.

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