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Irish firm evacuates Kurdistan staff

Monday, August 11 12:40:40

Independent oil and gas explorer Petroceltic and its partner Hess Middle East New Ventures have suspended operations in Iraqi Kurdistan and are evacuating non-essential staff, the Irish company said today.

"It has been decided, as a precautionary measure, to temporarily secure and suspend operations, including the drilling of Shireen-1 exploration well in the Dinarta licence," Petroceltic said in a statement.

The partners' decision follows announcements on evacuations and suspensions of production from other oil companies active in the region as violence spreads with the advance of Islamic State militants.

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