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Iraqi Kurds take over two northern oil fields

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Kurdish security forces took over two major oil fields outside the disputed northern city of Kirkuk before dawn today, Iraq’s Oil Ministry said, the latest move in a deepening dispute with the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

Oil Ministry spokesman Assem Jihad denounced the takeover of the Bai Hassan and Kirkuk oil fields as “a violation to the constitution” and warned that it poses “a threat to national unity.” He said Kurdish troops moved in and expelled local workers from the two sites.

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