Security incident at Ratawi over land claims

Gunmen made threats against a mine clearance subcontractor over land compensation claims that some security officials described as attempted extortion.
Mine clearance personnel operating under contracts with the state-run Basra Oil Company work in the Rumaila desert in March 2024. (Photo credit: Basra Oil Company)

BASRA - Unidentified gunmen traveling in four pickup trucks threatened to disrupt work at the Ratawi oil field, operated by France’s TotalEnergies, in what security officials described as either a demand for land compensation or an extortion attempt.

Contrary to reports in local media, the incident late Monday night did not target TotalEnergies or involve any of the company’s personnel, according to two security officials and a statement by the state-run Basra Oil Company (BOC). Rather, the security officials said, the gunmen confronted employees of a local mine clearance company that had been subcontracted by the Ratawi consortium to clear land being used for the further development of the field.

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