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  1. Thanks for stopping by Adam, time off is great and I'm glad you had a chance to recharge the batteries
  2. https://www.bloomberg.com/gadfly/articles/2017-06-21/after-qatar-is-iraq-next-for-the-saudis ENERGY Julian Lee Julian Lee is an oil strategist for Bloomberg First Word. Previously he worked as a senior analyst at the Centre for Global Energy Studies. Facebook Twitter Email Print June 21, 2017 10:35 AM EDT Mohammed bin Salman's ascension as Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia could lead to a more assertive Saudi oil policy within OPEC, as the kingdom puts its own needs first. Expect Iraq to follow Qatar as its next target. The elevation of the king's son is no surprise. Having already handed him the reins to guide the country forward, it would have been odd indeed if the king didn't ensure his son could continue his policies. Prince Mohammed, or MbS as he is known widely, has already pursued a robust regional strategy and will probably intensify as his power grows. He's led a military campaign against Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen and, more recently, has been central to the isolation of neighboring Qatar. In oil, Saudi Arabia has already shown itself willing to pursue its own interests over those of its neighbors. Two oil fields shared with Kuwait, with a combined daily production capacity of some 500,000 barrels, have been shut since late 2014 and early 2015 and show no sign of being reopened, despite repeated statements from the Kuwaiti side that their restart is imminent. Oil Under MbS While Mohammed bin Salman has been responsible for oil policy, prices have struggled Source: Bloomberg Saudi Aramco, the state-owned oil company, says the shutdown of the offshore Khafji field was triggered by environmental concerns, but some in Kuwait see the prolonged closure as payback for the emirate's unwillingness to supply troops in Yemen. Sanctions on Qatar result from claims that the emirate has been funding terrorist groups and is too close to Iran. Qatar denies these allegations and is still waiting for a list of specific Saudi demands. It sees the sanctions -- which include restrictions on tankers carrying Qatari oil and gas -- as an attempt to undermine its independent position on big regional issues, or even to bring about regime change. Saudi regional policy under Prince Mohammed has been characterized by a far harder stance against Iran and its spreading influence. That's unlikely to change. There's another big country falling under Tehran's sway: Iraq. Iran-backed militias, along with Kurdish counterparts, have been at the forefront of driving back Islamic insurgents in the country. Bilateral Iraqi-Iranian trade has increased every year since 2003, according to a report in the Tehran Times. By chance, Iraq is also the OPEC member that's most exceeding its agreed crude output target. That puts it in line for stronger criticism from Saudi Arabia as oil prices languish near levels not seen since the group adopted its output target back in November. IRAQ'S OVER-PRODUCTION OPEC's overall compliance with the production limits is better than for any similar deal in its history, but that's largely down to Saudi cutting much more deeply than agreed. That willingness to bear more of the burden probably won't persist, particularly if we eventually start to see a more balanced market and higher prices. Even the tensions in the Middle East, which would usually send oil prices rocketing, have had little impact so far. A more aggressive Riyadh might well see traders starting to price the political risk again. Even more so if Iraq becomes the next Qatar. This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners. To contact the author of this story: Julian Lee in London at jlee1627@bloomberg.net To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Boxell at jboxell@bloomberg.net
  3. MailIraqi forces push into Mosul Old City, warn IS 'surrender or die' https://www.yahoo.com/news/iraq-forces-push-mosul-old-city-warn-surrender-091502235.html Jean Marc Mojon AFPJune 19, 2017 View photos A member fon the Iraqi forces raises the victory sign as he holds a rocket-propelled grenade during the advance towards the Old City of Mosul on June 19, 2017 (AFP Photo/Ahmad AL-RUBAYE) Mosul (Iraq) (AFP) - Iraqi forces pushed deeper into Mosul's Old City on Monday after launching a final assault on the Islamic State group, warning civilians to stay inside and telling jihadists to "surrender or die". Iraqi forces launched the operation Sunday to retake the district, the last part of Iraq's second city still held by IS after a months-long offensive. Commanders say the jihadists are putting up fierce resistance and there are fears for more than 100,000 civilians believed to be trapped in the maze of narrow streets. Staff Major General Maan al-Saadi, a top commander in Iraq's elite Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS), told AFP that heavy fighting had resumed at dawn on Monday. "We pushed deeper into the Old City and took control of new areas in the Faruq neighbourhood," he said. The various Iraqi forces pushing into the Old City made modest gains, as IS fighters rained mortar fire on their positions and offered stiff resistance. "Penetrating was very difficult. Today the fighting is face to face," Saadi said. The push into Mosul's historic heart on the west bank of the Tigris River marks the culmination of a campaign launched in October by Iraqi forces to retake IS's last major urban stronghold in the country. The US-led coalition battling IS in Iraq and neighbouring Syria has backed the offensive, including with months of air strikes. The loss of Mosul would mark the effective end of the Iraqi portion of the cross-border "caliphate" that IS declared in summer 2014 after seizing swathes of Iraq and Syria. - IEDs on toy cars - Sheltering from relentless fire and explosions near a sniper position on the edge of the Old City, CTS captain Ahmed Jassem described a bitter fight. "We can't bring our vehicles into these narrow streets. It means they can't use as many car bombs either, but they use motorcycle bombs and even IEDs mounted on remote-controlled toy cars," he said. Iraqi forces stationed Humvees by the Grand Mosque on the retaken east side of Mosul, facing the Old City and mounted with speakers. The loudspeakers blared messages to IS fighters, telling them: "You have only this choice: surrender or die". Late on Sunday, Iraqi forces dropped nearly 500,000 leaflets over the city, warning that they had "started attacking from all directions". The leaflets urge civilians to "stay away from open places and... exploit any opportunity that arises during the fighting" to escape. The United Nations has said IS may be holding more than 100,000 civilians as human shields in the Old City. On Monday, the French national broadcaster France Televisions and Reporters Without Borders said three French journalists were wounded in a landmine blast in Mosul and their Iraqi fixer Bakhtiyar Addad killed. On Tuesday, the broadcaster announced that one of the reporters, Stephan Villeneuve, had died from his injuries. He had been preparing a documentary on the battle for Mosul for public channel France 2. Only a few hundred yards (metres) from the heaviest fighting, small groups of civilians gathered. "We moved to a camp in Hammam al-Alil when the neighbourhood was liberated, but homes were being looted so we came back to protect our property," said Nabil Hamed Khattab, a 56-year old who did not flinch when a mortar round came crashing down a few blocks away. Commanders have said the fighting is expected to be very difficult and could last weeks. Surrounded by Iraqi forces on three sides and blocked on the other by the Tigris that runs through Mosul, the jihadists are cornered. Iraqi forces launched a vast operation to retake Mosul eight months ago, seizing the city's eastern side in January and starting an assault on its western part the following month. Aid groups have raised concerns that already-traumatised civilians risk getting caught up in fierce street fighting. It is not clear how many civilians have been killed in the operation, but aid workers are warning that casualties will be high. "We're seeing dozens of new patients a day, including children and the elderly. For a heartbreakingly high number, it was simply too late; they died soon after reaching us," said Julia Schuerch, an ICRC emergency room specialist deployed in west Mosul. "Why didn't they come sooner?" she said. "Residents are being forced to make impossible life and death choices as they seek to flee the violence." Since the start of the battle to retake Mosul, an estimated 862,000 people have been displaced. Around 195,000 have since returned, mainly to the city's east. It was from the Old City's emblematic Al-Nuri mosque in July 2014 that IS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi made his only public appearance. He urged Muslims worldwide to move to the group's "caliphate" straddling Iraq and Syria. The jihadists have since lost most of the territory they once controlled in the face of US-backed offensives in Iraq and in Syria, where a Kurdish-Arab alliance is advancing on the group's last Syrian stronghold Raqa.
  4. Kurdistan Wants Independence Vote to Be First Step in Talks With Iraq © AFP 2017/ AHMAD AL-RUBAYE POLITICS 18:58 18.06.2017(updated 02:24 19.06.2017) Get short URL 269085 Iraqi Kurdistan expresses hope that the independence referendum, scheduled for late September, will mark the beginning of a comprehensive dialogue with Baghdad, head of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Foreign Relations Department, Minister Falah Mustafa Bakir told Sputnik Sunday. CAIRO (Sputnik) — Kurdistan became an autonomous region in Iraq after former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was overthrown and a new constitution was adopted in 2005. Since then, Kurdistan’s authorities have repeatedly raised the issue of the region’s independence and announced on June 7 that the referendum will be held on September 25. The decision was slammed by multiple Western states, including the United States, which regards the independence vote as a distraction from the war against the Daesh terror group. © AFP 2017/ AHMAD AL-RUBAYE Putin: 'Kurdish Military Very Effective Against Terrorism', No Grounds to Break Ties “We want the referendum to become the first step to the launch of a serious and comprehensive dialogue… aimed at the independence of Erbil from Baghdad,” Mustafa said. The minister noted that Kurdistan offered a referendum as an option of the peaceful solution to the internal problems of Iraq. "This is why we want Baghdad to respect the will of the people of the region," Mustafa stressed. The relations between Iraqi Kurdistan and shia government in Baghdad have worsened in the past years over multiple reasons, including views on local oil fields and the profits therefrom. Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Abadi, who came to power in 2014, took the path of normalizing relations with the autonomous region and admitted its right for self-determination. https://sputniknews.com/politics/201706181054743757-kurdistan-independence-vote-baghdad-talks/
  5. Iraq, June 18, 2017 A high-ranking Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) official said on Saturday they are doing their outmost to reactivate the Kurdistan parliament with the participation of the Change Movement (Gorran) which has been at odds with the KDP on two issues: the mechanism of calling a referendum on independence and amendment of the presidential law. “We will try our best to include Gorran in reopening the parliament,” Fazil Mirani, secretary of the KDP politburo, told Rudaw. Mirani said their party’s door is open for talks on the heated questions the Region is busy with, including the referendum, presidential and parliamentary elections, and the reopening of the parliament which has been closed since October 2015. “We will not close our doors on anyone and do not like anyone who does,” Mirani said in Koye town, eastern Erbil province. The Change Movement (Gorran), which holds the position of the speaker of parliament, has already refused a joint offer from the KDP and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) to reactivate the parliament, insisting that it does not accept 'conditional' terms attached to the initiative, Gorran spokesperson Shorish Haji has said in a televised statement on Wednesday. Mirani said they understand the situation of Gorran who are mourning their founder and leader Nawshirwan Mustafa who died in Sulaimani on May 19. He called for all parties to show tolerance and acceptance with each other. Commenting on a joint committee which is in the process of being formed from all Kurdish parties, Mirani said they hope Gorran will appoint its delegate to the committee tasked with visiting neighboring and world countries to discuss the referendum. Gorran, which has 24 seats in the parliament, turned down Kurdish President Masoud Barzani’s call to attend a “historical” all-party meeting earlier this month at which the referendum date was set. The Kurdistan Islamic Group (Komal), which has 6 seats in the parliament, also declined to attend the meeting. “We are trying to talk to them, too,” Mirani said, in reference to the Komal party. The decision to reactivate the parliament that has not convened since October 2015 was made in a high-level meeting between the two main ruling parties, the KDP and the PUK, and remains the only initiative the KDP has on the issue, Mirani confirmed. Their plan to reactive the parliament was for Gorran Speaker Yousif Mohammed to lead the first session to be followed by his resignation and that of his entire team in the second session. The proposal came as many parties have said they believe the Kurdistan Region’s referendum on independence, scheduled for September 25, should be dealt with through the parliament, not at the political party level. “The Gorran Movement declare that since October 12, 2015 we have emphasized that... the parliament with its current elected presidency team should return to its work,” Gorran's Haji said in the televised statement, adding that a functioning legislature would solve the legal and political crisis and the ongoing financial crisis that has plagued the Kurdistan Region since early 2014. “Any other mechanism to normalize the situation through the conditional reactivation of parliament is not acceptable to us, because the reason behind paralyzing the Kurdistan parliament is not its presidency, but the expiring of the Kurdistan Region Presidency’s term in office and the parliament’s attempt to amend the law of the [Kurdistan] Region’s presidency,” he continued. Relations between the KDP and Gorran deteriorated in October 2015 when the KDP sacked Gorran ministers and its speaker of parliament who took office after a deal with the KDP following the 2013 elections. The KDP accused Gorran of orchestrating riots against its offices in several cities. Gorran denied the accusations. Tensions between the two parties have also remained strained when the speaker refused to cancel a parliamentary session in 2015 planned to discuss President Masoud Barzani's second-term in office which was due to expire on August 19 that year. Speaker Mohammed is not allowed to run for the speaker of the parliament when a new one is elected, Rudaw has learned from sources, a condition set by the KDP. One other issue between the KDP and Gorran is the system of governance, with the KDP calling for a presidential system, while Gorran calls for a parliamentary one. rudaw http://iraqdailyjournal.com/story-z15470289
  6. http://iraqdailyjournal.com/story-z15470272 IRAQI ARMY LAUNCHES OPERATION TO CLEAR WESTERN ANBAR REGIONS FROM IS Iraq, June 18, 2017 A military operation was launched to drive Islamic State militants out of western regions in Anbar province, a senior Iraqi officer was quoted as saying. “Military offensive was launched on Saturday to clear Annah and Rawa cities, west of Anbar. Eight IS militants were killed after troops invaded these regions and destroyed three booby-trapped vehicles,” Maj.Gen.Noaman al-Wube’y, commander of the seventh division of the Iraqi army in Anbar told DPA. The operation, according to Wube’y, is ongoing to clear the regions in west of Anbar. Meanwhile, Anbar Operations Command declared foiling an attack by IS against military troops west of Rutba in Anbar. Speaking to AlSumaria News on Saturday, Maj.Gen. Mahmoud al-Falahi said “the first division of army thwarted an attack by IS against units in Okshat crossroads, west of Rutba.” “Two IS vehicles were destroyed, while militants inside were killed,” he added. Iraqi troops were able to return life back to normal in the biggest cities of Anbar including Fallujah, Ramadi and others after recapturing them. However, Anbar’s western towns of Annah, Qaim and Rawa are still held by the extremist group since 2014, when it emerged to proclaim a self-styled Islamic Caliphate. Fighter jets from the Iraqi army and the international coalition have also regularly pounded IS locations in the province. iraqinews
  7. BELGIUM EXTENDS ITS MISSION AGAINST IS IN IRAQ AND SYRIA Iraq, June 18, 2017 Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel announced, on Saturday, that his country decided to extend its mission within the US-led international coalition fighting the Islamic State (IS) in Iraq and Syria. Michel said that Belgium is an important part of the international coalition against the Islamic State, while added that the Belgian government will allocate 17 million Euros for the military operations against the extremist group. The current Belgian mission in Iraq and Syria to fight the Islamic State was planned to end this month, but the government decided to extend it for six more months until the end of 2017, Michel explained. Michek also revealed that the Belgian military will send four F-16 fighter jets along with 100 troops to a base in Jordan to take part in the war against IS in Iraq and Syria. iraqinews http://iraqdailyjournal.com/story-z15470255
  8. IRAQI PM ABADI TO VISIT RIYADH ON MONDAY, SAUDI FM Iraq, June 18, 2017 Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi is to visit Saudi Arabia next week as part of a tour of neighbouring countries. Riyadh confirmed he will visit the Saudi capital on Monday as the two sides have taken practical steps to mend ties. The visit also comes as Riyadh and a number of Arab nations have cut diplomatic ties with Qatar and put in place a partial blockade against Doha. Abadi has said he is opposed to the isolation of Qatar, but Iraq’s vice president has accused Doha of planning to divide Iraq on sectarian lines. Abadi’s spokesperson, Saad al-Hadithi, confirmed to Rudaw the prime minister will visit Riyadh. Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir revealed on Friday in London that Abadi will visit his country on Monday. He also reaffirmed Saudi Arabia’s support for the fight against ISIS and Iraq’s 'unity.' Abadi said last Tuesday that he initially wanted to make a tour of the Gulf countries, but that it has for now been confined to Iraq's neighbors. Asked about the Qatar crisis with Riyadh ahead of his visit, Abadi said that he opposes any sort of blockade against any country. He said his objection comes from the fact that Iraq suffered years of economic blockade in the 1990s that affected the lives of millions of Iraqi people when the international community put Iraq under embargo. Saudi Arabia is leading Gulf nations in cutting diplomatic and trade ties with Qatar, accusing Doha of supporting terrorism, a charge Doha has denied. 'Regimes are not affected by the blockade; the blockade hurts people,' Abadi said as he gave the example of the family of the former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein who were living in luxury despite the miserable conditions of his own people as the result of the West-imposed blockade. Abadi also said that he seeks information from both Riyadh and Doha regarding the claims and counterclaims they make against each other. Iraq’s Vice President Iyad Allawi voiced a different opinion in a news conference in Cairo on Saturday. He expressed support for the isolation of Qatar and accused Doha of trying to fragment Iraq on sectarian lines. “In Iraq, Qatar adopted a project similar to that of Iran; to split Iraq into a Sunni region in exchange for a Shiite region,” Reuters reported Allawi saying. “Unfortunately, some Arab states were silent when it came to Qatar.” He said it was time to be honest with Qatar in order resolve issues. “After that confrontation, comes reconciliation.” Abadi’s visit to Saudi Arabia comes amid thawing relations between the two countries. He said he received an invitation more than a year ago from Riyadh, but had insisted that the Saudis take a number of steps to normalise relations between them, including a visit by a Saudi high official to Baghdad. Saudi’s Foreign Minister Jubeir visited Iraq in February, the first time a high ranking Saudi official visited Iraq since the 1990s when the two countries severed diplomatic ties. Jubeir promised then to appoint a new ambassador to Baghdad and resume direct flights between the two countries. Hoshyar Zebari, Iraq's former and longest serving foreign minister after the invasion of Iraq in 2003, said at the time that the Americans played a role in bringing the two countries together again. Saudi Arabia suspended diplomatic ties with Iraq in 1990 following the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. Twenty-five years later the Saudi Embassy reopened in Baghdad at the end of 2015. About six months later though, relations experienced yet another low. The Iraqi government asked Saudi Arabia to stop “interfering” in its internal affairs in a strong statement a day after the Saudi foreign minister had said that the Shiite militia group known as Hashd al-Shaabi must be disbanded. Thamer al-Sabhan, Saudi Arabia’s first appointed Ambassador since the gulf war, sparked outrage in Iraq two years ago when he claimed that “Iranian terrorist personalities” were involved in the battle for Fallujah against ISIS, trying to punish the Sunni Arabs. Iraqi Shiite officials reacted by calling on the government to revoke the Saudi ambassador’s credentials. The Iraqi foreign ministry said that Saudi Arabia was trying to address its own regional conflict with other countries by interfering in Iraq’s domestic affairs, in reference to the kingdom’s regional rivalry with Iran. rudaw http://iraqdailyjournal.com/story-z15470238
  9. "Finance is the most important axes of the beginning of the road of development sought by Iraq as a country rich in abundant possession of various resources, which makes us work towards the benefit of successful global trade financing, which managed to create an effective economy." Along with that, a currency that has some meat on it
  10. I sure hope so nannab, I can't wait to see the suffering stop and a smile on all Iraqi faces. That coupled with the men and women who fought this bloody war to go home and begin to enjoy this thing we call life.
  11. Iraq, June 17, 2017 I will always be proud of what I did in the unofficial referendum of 2005 when I wholeheartedly went to the improvised tent where there was a ballot box and voted for the separation of Kurdistan from Iraq. And I did not vote for the Iraqi constitution. The vote for the Iraqi constitution was also hand-in-hand with parliamentary elections. When the monitor said to me, “You forgot to vote for the Iraqi constitution,” I replied, “I didn't forget. I just don't want to vote for it.” I don't believe in a constitution that defines Iraq as one country. Had it said Iraq was made of two countries I would have voted for it. Back then I was working at Media Newspaper and with my colleagues we were working on how unpractical Iraq’s federal system was at solving the many issues, and how it did not help Kurdistan separate from Iraq constitutionally. Then, the party which owned the newspaper, announced its voting ‘Yes’ for the Iraqi constitution, and as the editor-in-chief of the newspaper I wrote an article and said that I wouldn't vote for it. Many people aren’t enthusiastic at the time of elections, and they are right because of the many flaws and endless problems in Kurdistan’s political and governing system. But taking part in the referendum is a patriotic responsibility and a step towards the national goal which is the establishment of an independent Kurdish state. I believe that parties and groups who say they doubt the referendum is for independence and therefore avoid supporting it should be the ones backing it before anyone else in order to use all their influence and power to make sure that referendum and its outcome are going to be nothing but independence. Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani has said time and again that the referendum is for the people of Kurdistan to peacefully separate from Iraq. From its beginning Iraq has never been the country of all. One people in Iraq have always been in charge and the rest oppressed. From the time of the monarchy through to the removal of the Baath regime it was the state of the Sunnis. Kurds and Shiites were the suppressed. And from the regime change till now the Shiites have been in control with Kurds and Sunnis oppressed. Iraq has never been and will never be a country for all. If the rights of millions of Arabs are trampled just because of religious differences, what hope can Kurds and other minorities have to live in such a country? Staying with Iraq, therefore, means staying with Iraq’s constant political and military attack on Kurdistan, which in turn will always be an impediment to the progress of democracy in Kurdistan. In no aspect whatsoever is living with Iraq in the interest of the Kurdish people. Now that Iraq has become a producer of terrorist organizations that threaten regional and world security and the world has sympathy for the Kurds in recent years, it is the best opportunity for a referendum, and especially because referendums for independence in Quebec, Scotland, and Catalonia are seen as a normal thing. The Kurdistan Region has in the past 25 years been a force for good and stability more so than many countries in the region and this makes the call for independence yet louder. Also, the Kurds themselves or their land have never been part of Iraq to say they are dividing it now. Iraq was built divided in the first place. There also was never an Iraqi nation. It was built unhealthy and governed unhealthy. The Kurds today are not dividing Iraq, but only separating from it, especially as Iraq has proven from day one to be a failed state. The referendum is the voice of a people. Today, through mass media and ease of communication, many nations and individuals can express their ambitions. During its past revolutions Kurds only had a few envoys abroad. Today through social media they are part of the world and therefore can build a strong and solid support for Kurdistan’s independence referendum. It is now the best time for Kurds to work for independence and declare it through the coming referendum. rudaw http://iraqdailyjournal.com/story-z15465359
  12. IRAQ COULD BOOST OIL OUTPUT TO 5 MILLION BPD THIS YEAR Iraq, June 17, 2017 If you thought Iraq’s plans to increase its oil production to 5 million bpd were rather pie-in-the-skyish, think again. Iraq’s plans to increase its oil production capacity to 5 million barrels per day to be ready for the end of OPEC’s cuts is “not unrealistic”, principal upstream analyst at Wood Mackenzie, Ian Thom, told Bloomberg in an interview published on Thursday. “From a production capacity point of view, the investment in a few of the southern fields is taking them closer to that number,” the analyst told Bloomberg. He went on to add: “They may be thinking ahead to the end of the nine-month period, when if they can demonstrate capacity of 5 million barrels, it may make for a different conversation with OPEC members.” In March this year, Iraq’s Oil Minister Jabar al-Luaibi said that the country would have the output capacity of 5 million bpd in the second half this year. “We achieved this great achievement of 4 million barrels per day ... middle of 2016, and now we have climbed up and we are reaching about 5 million barrels per day beginning of second half of this year,” al-Luaibi said in an interview with CNBC back then. In a report on why Iraq’s production growth has underperformed in recent years, Wood Mackenzie said last month: “Iraq undoubtedly has the large-scale low-cost oil resources in its southern fields to underpin production of over 10 million b/d. But the harsh technical service contract terms, and a myriad of technical, political and security factors have all conspired to subdue growth.” OPEC’s second-largest producer, Iraq, was the last holdout to the initial deal for a collective cut of production, arguing for an exemption because of funds it needs to fight ISIS, and disputing the secondary sources that the cartel uses for tracking members’ production. Iraq agreed to the deal in the end, pledging to cut 210,000 bpd of its October 2016 production level and cap it at 4.351 million bpd. Since the output cuts began in January, Iraq has not fully complied with its quota of the cuts in any of the months covered under the deal. Its production last month even grew by 44,400 bpd over April, to 4.424 million bpd, making it one of the worst under-complying OPEC producers. oilprice http://iraqdailyjournal.com/story-z15465291
  13. Iraq, June 17, 2017 Navistar Defense has received an $18.8 million contract from the U.S. Army to manufacture and deliver 115 International 7000 MV Medium Tactical Vehicles to Iraq. The contract will fall under the Foreign Military Sales program. Most of the work will be performed at Navistar's West Point, Miss., factory and is expected to be completed by January 2018. The equipment is slated to be used by the Iraqi Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Defense security forces, the company announced this week. 'Since 2004, Navistar Defense has delivered nearly 7,000 trucks and buses to Iraq through foreign military sales contracts,' Kevin Thomas, president of Navistar, said in a press release. 'As a proven partner, we're proud to supply the Iraqi Army with a highly versatile and easy-to-maintain 7000-series tactical military support truck that offers greater efficiencies in support, spare parts, training, and operations.' The 7000 MV MTV is a militarized six-wheel flatbed truck with a reinforced suspension and turbo-charged diesel engine. It is designed for heavy cargo transport, towing and vehicle recovery operations, and can carry up to 25 tons. The vehicle is designed to be easily mounted with MaxPro armor kits based off of the company's tactical Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles. UPI http://iraqdailyjournal.com/story-z15465274