An attack with an explosive device on an oil field in the northern Iraqi region of Kirkuk was blamed on Islamic State militants, according to an unnamed source who spoke to Turkey's Anadolu Agency.
No damage was done to the field, Bai Hassan, according to the source.
Earlier this year, suspected Islamic State militants blew up two oil wells at the Bai Hassan field, killing at least one security officer and setting the oil wells ablaze.
The Bai Hassan field that can produce around 200,000 barrels per day (bpd) of oil has more than 120 oil wells. Based on these reports, it is an attractive target for the Islamic State, which despite international efforts, is alive and well in Iraq and Syria.
A recent report by VOA News cited intelligence agencies as saying that the terrorist group remained resilient and ready to spring back out when the U.S. implemented its plans to "recede deep into the background."
"The group has evolved into an entrenched insurgency, exploiting weaknesses in local security to find safe havens and targeting forces engaged in counter-ISIL operations," a report by the UN sanctions monitoring team said.
"Attacks in Baghdad in January and April 2021 underscore the group's resilience despite heavy counter-terrorism pressure from Iraqi authorities," the report also said. Islamic State "is likely to continue attacking civilians and other soft targets in the capital whenever possible to garner media attention and embarrass the Government of Iraq."
Based on what we are currently witnessing happening in Afghanistan, the deeper in the background the U.S. recedes, the more emboldened IS will become, which could mean more attacks on oil fields in the oil-rich Kirkuk region. This would interfere with OPEC's second-largest exporter of crude with plans to boost its production considerably once the OPEC+ agreement expires.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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