How the US is stealing Syrian black gold

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — Thirty million dollars a month – that’s exactly how much, according to the Russian Ministry of Defense, the United States earns from oil production in Syria.

The supply chain has long been debugged, the largest fields are guarded by fighters of private military companies and the Kurdish armed groups controlled by the Pentagon. About how Americans profit from someone else’s black gold, – in the material of RIA.

Black smuggling

Before the war, the oil and gas industry brought about 20 percent of the total to the Syrian budget.

The country fully provided its own needs for hydrocarbons, even enough for export. In 2009, production amounted to 400 thousand barrels per day. In 2013, this figure dropped to 59 thousand barrels, and in 2014 – to 33 thousand.

It was during these years that the IS terrorists took control of most of the province of Deir ez-Zor, the largest oil region of Syria, where three quarters of the national reserves of black gold are concentrated.

The Islamists received at their disposal the fields of al-Omr, al-Tanak, Dafra, al-Ward and others. The pseudo-caliphate launched a brisk trade in oil on the black market. The total production was estimated at 350 thousand barrels per day. IS sold oil, earning from 25 to 60 dollars per barrel. The main outlet for many experts called Turkey, where hydrocarbons were transported through intermediaries.

In particular, in December 2015, the head of the Main Operations Directorate of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, Sergei Rudskoy, at a briefing named the three main routes for transporting oil to Turkey from the IS -controlled areas of Syria and Iraq.

The western route went to the Turkish ports on the Mediterranean coast, the northern one to the Batman oil refinery, the eastern one to a large transshipment base in the village of Jizra. As a proof, the Russian defense department showed a shot from drones and satellites, which clearly visible columns of fuel trucks going to the Turkish border.

The Russian Aerospace Forces have systematically tried to deprive IS of this source of income. In the first few months of the air operation alone, aviation hit 32 oil refineries, 11 oil refineries, and 23 oil pumping stations. 1,080 hydrocarbon tankers were destroyed.

Russian forces managed to quickly halve the illegal flow of oil. Militants’ incomes fell from three to one and a half million dollars a day.

“Private business”

As the territory of Syria was freed from ISIS terrorists, most of the deposits east of the Euphrates came under the control of the “Syrian Democratic Forces” and their curators from the United States. In particular, the Kurds received at the disposal of the field in the area of ​​the city of Al-Hasek.

According to some reports, they independently began oil production and refining in these territories, and finished products were sold on the local market. The largest deposits of Al-Omr and Konoko remain under the protection of the USA and SDF.

According to the spokesman for the Russian Defense Ministry, Major General Igor Konashenkov, the Americans delivered equipment for oil production to Syria, bypassing their own sanctions. He stressed that the proceeds from the smuggling of Syrian hydrocarbons go to the accounts of US private military companies and intelligence agencies.

“The oil export contract is being implemented by the US-controlled company Sadcab, created under the so-called Autonomous Administration of Eastern Syria,” Konashenkov said at a briefing. “And the proceeds from the smuggling of Syrian oil through the brokerage companies that interact with it go to the number accounts of PMCs and US intelligence agencies.”

The speaker of the Ministry of Defense emphasized that US government agencies earn over $ 30 million a month on this “private business”.

“For such a continuous and free from the control and taxes of the American state financial flow, the Pentagon and Langley leadership will be ready to guard and defend oil wells in Syria from the mythical” hidden IS cells “endlessly,” summed up Konashenkov.

In support of these words, the Ministry of Defense published space intelligence data. So, on the image of the Daman oil gathering station 42 kilometers east of the Deir-ez-Zor province from August 23, 90 units of automotive vehicles, including 23 fuel trucks, are captured.

On September 5, in Hasek province, 25 vehicles were observed, including 22 fuel trucks, and three days later 36 more vehicles were discovered in Deir Ez-Zor province, 32 of which were fuel trucks. In the land area of ​​Meyadin, 41 vehicles were observed on the same day, including 34 fuel trucks.

Strategic region

“The US does not hide the goals of controlling Syrian oil fields and, obviously, will be ready to defend their intentions in any way,” commented Sergei Zheleznyak, member of the State Duma Foreign Affairs Committee.

“This fact causes not only concern for the situation on the Turkish-Syrian border, but “It will negatively affect the situation in Syria as a whole. Washington, which has repeatedly promised to withdraw troops from the territory of the Syrian Republic, clearly intends to maintain influence in the region.”

It is not surprising that the Americans, although they announced their departure from this country, are in no hurry to finally leave its oil-bearing regions. According to the head of the Pentagon, Mark Esper, the troops “will ensure the safety of oil fields from terrorists IS”.

The other day it became known about the transfer of several hundred US troops from Iraq to the province of Deir ez-Zor.

Russia, unlike the United States, implements all projects on the Syrian oil industry solely on the basis of agreements with its rightful owner, official Damascus.

In particular, in late October it became known that Uraltechnostroy intends to continue the construction of a hydrocarbon collection point in the north-east of the country, which was stopped in 2011 due to the outbreak of war. In addition, the company offered its official services to the Syrian government in rebuilding oil and gas infrastructure affected during the conflict.

“Russia has experience in the oil and gas sector,” said Muhammad Jerudi, director of the planning and international cooperation department of the Syrian Ministry of Oil, in an interview with RIA. “This experience and the availability of specialists in this field are significant.”

According to the minister, cooperation with Russia will help not only restore the work of the main Syrian deposits, but also increase production there.

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