Wednesday, 23 April 2008

Take it or leave it...

Iraq's top oil official on 22 April threatened oil majors, who are in negotiations with his war-torn country on deals to increase the country's oil output, that Iraq may abandon the deals if they fail to sign them by June, Spencer Swartz reports to Dow Jones Newswires.

Oil Minister Hussein al-Shahristani's latest threat is the first strong statement after many upbeat ones he and other oil officials used to state since these negotiations were declared in 2007. Officials predicted to sign these deals in March.

"Iraqi workers have already increased production by about 500,000 barrels a day over the past year and could continue adding capacity without the foreign companies, Shahristani said. However, he added, their know-how and technology would greatly facilitate the process of increasing production capacity there."

Do somthing...

Iraq's well known woman activist and lawmaker, Safia al-Suhailh, made today an appeal to the Iraqi government to act immediately to curb the killing of women in one of Baghdad's western neighborhoods by militant groups.

Although al-Suhail did not name these groups but residents told the UN IRINnews that Mahdi Army militiamen, the armed wing of Shiite radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr were behind such killing.

"Over the past six months 15 women were killed in al-Salam neighbourhood for religious reasons or because they had criticized the militants, or because of their previous affiliation to the Baath Party [disbanded party of ousted President Saddam Hussein]," al-Suhail told IRIN.