Iraq plans military op to secure oil route to Iran – report

Iraqi forces are preparing an operation to consolidate control of an area near the Iran border to be used for the transit of Iraqi oil, Reuters reported two officials as having said on Monday. The operation to secure the Hamrin mountain range could start this week, they said. The area is between the Kirkuk oil fields and the town of Khanaqin on the Iranian border. In December, Iraqi oil officials announced plans to transport Kirkuk crude by truck to Iran’s Kermanshah refinery. The trucking was to start last week and oil officials declined to give reasons for the delay other than that it was technical in nature.