Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) Washington has pressured companies and governments not to buy crude from the Kurdish Regional Government Kurdistan RegionG), but it has stopped short of banning U.S. firms from buying it outright.
The Kurdish Regional Government Kurdistan RegionG) has renewed its push for an independent state amid the latest violence roiling Iraq. Its relationship with Baghdad has deteriorated over what it sees as Maliki’s role in stoking the crisis and over the long-running dispute over oil sales.
On Thursday Carlos Pascual, head of the U.S. State Department’s Energy Bureau, told Reuters that there had been no change of policy in Washington towards Kurdish independent oil sales, but he said he hoped the central government and the region could reach an agreement in time.
Baghdad has threatened to sue anyone that buys Kurdish oil.
“We have made people aware that whatever they buy entails certain risks, and we have consistently told them about that,” Pascual said after a talk at Washington’s Carnegie Endowment.
“At some point Baghdad and Erbil have to come to an understanding of how the development and the export of those resources can contribute to Iraq’s overall development,” he said in a speech, one of his last official events before taking up a fellowship at Columbia University in New York.
Pascual said that without a deal, conflict between the two sides risked becoming “more acute”. /End/
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