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Kurdish oil exports halted after row

world Updated: Apr 03, 2012 00:42 IST
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Iraq's northern Kurdish semi-autonomous region has halted oil exports over a payment row with the central government in Baghdad, causing further deterioration in its relationship with the country's Arab-led government.

The Kurdistan Regional Government has unilaterally struck scores of deals with oil companies in recent years even though Baghdad says it has no right to do so. The two sides struck a tentative deal in 2011 by which the Kurds send oil to Baghdad, which sells it, and each side then takes 50% of the revenues.

In a statement issued late Sunday, the region's ministry of natural resources said Baghdad failed to send any money since May, even though it had been exporting 50,000 barrels per day. They said only two payments of $514 million have been made, with the last being in May 2011.