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Militants attack Iraq's largest oil refinery

9 months ago Wednesday, June 18, 2014 12:59:58 AM CDT June 18, 2014 Wednesday, June 18 2014 Jun 18, 2014 in News
Source: Associated Press

BAGHDAD, Iraq- A top security official in Iraq says Islamic militants are attacking the country's largest oil refinery, some 155 miles north of the capital, Baghdad.

The official said fighters of the al-Qaida-inspired Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant began their attack late Monday night and it continued into Tuesday morning.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to journalists.

The Beiji refinery accounts for a little more than a quarter of the country's entire refining capacity - all of which goes toward domestic consumption for things like gasoline, cooking oil and fuel for power stations.

Any lengthy outage at Beiji risks long lines at the gas pump and electricity shortages, adding to the chaos already facing Iraq.

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