Sunday, December 20, 2009

” Iraq, Iran play cat-and-mouse game over oil well”, The Montreal Gazette

By Steven Edwards (18/12/2009)

Iranian snipers in full camouflage march during an annual military parade which marks Iran's eight-year war with Iraq, Sept. 22, 2009. Iranian soldiers reportedly crossed into Iraqi territory on Friday.

Photograph by: Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images

Nouri al-Maliki, the Iraqi prime minister, called an emergency meeting of the Iraqi National Security Council, which ruled Iran had violated Iraq's "territorial integrity" and issued the demand for withdrawal.

But it stopped short of saying what Iraq would do if the Iranian soldiers stayed put.

The U.S. military in Iraq said "no violence" had taken place as it confirmed the presence of the Iranian soldiers.

"Iranian forces come to this well periodically, and then at daybreak they withdraw," a senior engineer of Maysan oil Company told Reuters. "They are provoking us . . . I don't know why this is a big deal this time."

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