Jun. 9, 2013 (TSR) – Informed sources reported that Turkish experts working on the oil wells have been illegally transporting oil to Turkey with the assistance of terrorist groups who attacked a number of oil wells in the province of Deir ez-Zor in Syria, which also caused several oil wells to be set on fire.
The prospects of oil income from these wells have caused heavy clashes between the rival terrorist groups in Syria, so much so that Moaz al-Khatib, former Syrian Opposition Coalition Chairman in protest against this action said: “those who have attempted to sell the oil, in fact are involved in trafficking Syrians riches.”
Thousands of barrels of crude are smuggled to Turkey daily by small tankers using farm roads, informed sources said. The oil is taken to Bab al-Hawa or Tal Abiad border posts, a source close to the smugglers in Deir ez-Zor.
The EU has lifted some of oil sanctions against Syria since May of this year, so the terrorists could export the oil under its control to Europe, and this action was followed by criticism of the Syrian government.
Looting a Sovereign Nation’s Natural Resources Violates International Laws
The Syrian government slammed the EU on April for its involvement in the continued political and economic campaign targeting the national economy and the daily life of the Syrian citizens.
The Syrian Foreign and Expatriates Ministry said that the EU decision to allow importing Syrian oil and its derivatives and investing in Syrian oil industry through exclusive transactions with the so-called ‘opposition coalition’ violates the principle of non-interference in the countries’ affairs.
The Ministry said that EU “contradicts in its international legal framework with the principle of non-interference approved by the UN Charter in article 2 and the principles of sovereignty and the peoples’ right to choose their political and economic systems without foreign interference.” It added that the EU decision also violates the General Assembly declaration in 1970 on Principles of International Law Concerning Friendly Relations and Co-operation among States.
The Ministry reiterated that the EU decision also violates the countries’ commitments to refrain from supporting terrorism as it aims to provide support for the armed terrorist groups that are linked to Jabhat al-Nusra, which is an offshoot of al-Qaeda.
It affirmed that “Syria will practice its natural right to take the necessary measures to maintain its sovereignty over its natural resources in the face of the attempts of piracy and looting.”
On April, Syria’s Minister of Justice, Najm al-Ahamd, said the government is also working on preparing special laws related to the crimes of stealing and selling the Syrian oil.
Minister of Oil and Mineral Resources, Suleiman al-Abbas, stressed that the Ministry will practice its natural right to taking all necessary measures to protect the oil resources in the country against attempts of piracy and looting during a meeting with directors and heads of boards of oil establishments and companies.
He clarified that the Ministry will vigorously and seriously keep watch of the oil fields and wells and quickly inform of every transgression case for immediate handling in coordination with the other parties and ministries concerned.
Talks during the meeting focused on the necessary measures to be taken to protect the oil and mineral resources sector against the acts of looting and theft by the armed terrorist groups in the aftermath of the EU decision to buy the Syrian oil from what they called the “Armed Opposition”.
Al-Abbas stressed the need to correspond with partners in the foreign companies working in Syria “to pressure their governments to prevent the implementation of the illegitimate decision that contradicts with the rules of the international law and the UN Charter.”
He said the EU decision constitutes “a flagrant violation of all the international conventions on respecting the states’ sovereignty and a participation in stealing resources that belong to the Syrian people.”
In two identical letters addressed to the UN Security Council President and the UN Secretary General, the Syrian Foreign and Expatriates Ministry dismissed the ‘unprecedented step” of EU’s decision on April 22 of allowing member countries to conduct transactions in oil import, oil and gas industry equipment and technology export and investment in oil industry in Syria exclusively with the so-called ‘the opposition coalition’ under the pretext of “helping the civilian population and the opposition”.
The letters added that the decision also goes against the UN General Assembly declaration in 1962 on “Permanent Sovereignty over Natural Resources” which stresses the full right of every country to its natural resources and the respect of the economic respect of countries.
The Ministry continued as saying that the EU decision is also incompatible with the General Assembly declaration in 1981 on the Inadmissibility of Intervention and Interference in the Internal Affairs of States which provides for the inadmissibility of any direct or indict engagement in supporting insurgency activities inside other states under whatever pretext or taking measures that target the unity of other states or undermine and sabotage the regime in them.
The Ministry reiterated that the sanctions which the EU imposed on Syria since the beginning of the crisis are “illegal” and “illegitimate” resulted in nothing but increasing the suffering of the Syrian people who are already subject to the practices of the armed terrorist groups particularly in terms of vandalizing the main infrastructures and destroying the pillars of the national economy, of which the oil sector is an essential one.
The Ministry lashed out at the EU countries for “having gone even beyond that to allow the possibility of investing these resources in favor of one group that claims to be an opposition and represent the Syrian people while it actually represents no one by its masters and their interests that are connected to foreign sides.”
The letters reiterated that the EU decision is “illegal” and “amounts to an act of aggression” according to the Definition of Aggression adopted by the General Assembly in its resolution 3314 for 1974.
They added that the decision also constitutes “a participation in stealing resources that belong to the Syrian people, the only ones with authority over these resources represented by their standing legitimate government. “
“Accordingly,” the letters added, “Syria demands that the Security Council take necessary measures to prevent the implementation of this illegitimate decision that contradicts with the rules of international law and the UN Charter.”