Ankara faces a lawsuit if ISIS oil trade is confirmed
The Iraqi Defense Ministry has said that Baghdad will lodge a formal lawsuit against Ankara with the UN Security Council if claims are proven right and that the Turkish government is involved in oil smuggling with ISIS.
Press TV reports: “If the Iraqi government receives enough evidence and details, without any hesitation it will file a protest at the UN Security Council and all other relevant international bodies,” said Naseer Nuri, the ministry’s spokesman, in a phone interview with Russia’s Sputnik news agency on Wednesday.
Nuri added that some “general information” regarding smuggling of Iraqi oil by tankers to certain countries, including Turkey, was already available.
“There is evidence, satellite photos and security services’ reports which confirm that Daesh smuggles oil to Turkey. This oil is used to fund Daesh,” he further said.
Earlier in the day, during a press briefing for the international media held in the Russian capital Moscow, officials of the Russian Defense Ministry announced that they have concrete evidence that the Turkish government was involved in the illegal smuggling of oil from territories held by the terror group in Syria and Iraq.
Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov slammed Ankara for being the main consumer of the oil “stolen from its rightful owners, Syria and Iraq,” and said that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his family were involved in this “criminal business.”
The Turkish leader, who was on a visit to Qatar on Wednesday, also accused Moscow of slander, saying, “No one has a right to engage in slander against Turkey by saying that Turkey is buying oil from Daesh.”
He had earlier said that he was prepared to step down if accusations by Russia that Ankara has traded oil with Daesh were confirmed.
Meanwhile, the press attaché of the Iraqi Ministry of Oil, Asem Jihad, told Sputnik that his country would request the Security Council to open an investigation into the oil smuggling from Iraq by Daesh.
“The UN Security Council is requested to form committees to put in effect the previously adopted resolutions on smuggling. According to said resolutions, all involved in these activities, be they individuals, companies or states, will be branded as criminals,” Jihad said.
Gruesome violence has plagued the northern and western parts of Iraq ever since June 2014, when Daesh launched its terrorist activities and captured portions of Iraqi territory.