Al-Qaida blamed for Beiji refinery attack

The first major attack on Iraq’s oil facilities in months comes after Beiji refinery chief leaves post and amidst warnings of terrorist attacks.
A guard stands watch over Beiji Refinery on January 18, 2010. (AYMAN OGHANNA/Iraq Oil Report)

BAGHDAD - Iraq’s largest oil refinery was attacked by al-Qaida early Saturday morning, according to high-level oil and security officials, killing at least two people and taking the refinery off line for an unknown period of time.

"These people knew what they were doing,” said Ahmad al-Shamma, deputy oil minister for refining. “They were targeting the crisis in the fuel, gasoline and kerosene. That's where the damage was concentrated.”

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