by Lady Michelle Jennifer Santos
20 December 2015 (TSR) – A secret report compiled by an independent Norwegian oil and gas consulting firm given to the Norwegian government in July was leaked and vindicates Russian President Vladimir Putin’s allegation of ISIL’s, also known as ISIS/Daesh/IS, vast oil smuggling trade in Turkey, sold in black market at a steep discount prices.
The secret report from July this year states that large amounts of oil have been smuggled across the border to Turkey from IS-controlled areas in Syria and Iraq, Klassekampen reported.
The facsimile of the leaked report reveals the following:
The majority of ISIL oil is sold domestically within Iraq. ISIL transports crude by trucks towards the Turkish and Syrian borders. ISIL probably blends some its crude with others exportable grades (primarily Kirkuk).
Quotable Kirkuk is exported via pipeline to Ceyhan, Turkey with a current capacity of 300k bbl/d (barrels per day). The Kirkuk/Banias (Syria) pipeline has been defunct since US airstrikes in 2003. Turkish refiners consume some crude while the rest is exported around the world, including Europe.
The oil that ISIL sales on the black market — mostly via truck through smuggling routes on the Turkish border — is sold at a steep discount prices ranging from $25-$45 per barrel.
The crude is reportedly sold on the black market at greatly reduced prices, while the Brent benchmark is currently trading at $35-$50 per barrel.
This also confirms the Financial Times report as well as Associated Press on October:
Estimates by local traders and engineers put crude production in Isis-held territory at about 34,000-40,000 bpd. The oil is sold at the wellhead for between $20 and $45 a barrel, earning the militants an average of $1.5m a day.
The report is based on the figures from the consulting Rystad Energy’s own database, as well as conversations with sources in the region.
“Exports of oil is based on a well-established black market for export via Turkey,” the conclusion.
“Many of the smugglers and corrupt border guards who helped Saddam Hussein to avoid international sanctions, now helps IS exporting oil and importing cash,” it added.
After the Turkish fighters shot down a Russian warplanes on the border with Syria on November 24, the President Putin claimed that Turkey receives oil from IS which President Recep Erdogan vehemently denied.
Iraq’s premier Haider al-Abadi on December 7 also joined a chorus of countries saying that Turkey is complicit to ISIL’s oil smuggling trade and financing.
The leaked secret report that Klassekampen has gained access to, shows that Norwegian authorities since July this year has been informed that the charges against their NATO ally.
It is important to note that the current NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg was the former prime minister of Norway, which makes this leaked report even more interesting as this coincided with the U.N. Security Council warning on Thursday that some countries are failing to implement long-standing sanctions against Islamic State, as an unprecedented meeting of finance ministers put the global focus on cutting off the militant group’s funds, Reuters reported.
The 15-member U.N. Security council unanimously adopted a U.S. and Russian-drafted resolution that ties together existing measures targeting Islamic State’s finances and offers guidance on implementation in a bid to push more countries to act.
The council renamed its al Qaeda sanctions regime the “ISIL (Daesh) and al Qaeda Sanctions Committee” – Islamic State is also known as ISIL and Daesh – and called on states to report within 120 days on their implementation of sanctions.
Earlier this month, the Russian Defense Ministry has released evidence unmasking the vast illegal oil trade by Islamic State which points to Turkey as the main destination for the smuggled petrol, implicating the Erdogan government in aiding the terrorists.
The Russian findings show that a whole team of bandits and Turkish elites stealing large quantities of oil from their neighbors is operating in the region entering the territory of Turkey via “live oil pipelines,” consisting of thousands of oil trucks.
Antonov added that Turkey is the main buyer of smuggled oil coming from Iraq and Syria.
“According to our data, the top political leadership of the country – President Erdogan and his family – is involved in this criminal business,” he said.
Since the start of Russia’s anti-terrorist operation in Syria on September 30, the income of Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) militants from illegal oil smuggling has been significantly reduced, the ministry said.
“The income of this terrorist organization was about $3 million per day. After two months of Russian airstrikes their income was about $1.5 million a day,” Lieutenant-General Sergey Rudskoy said.
Moreover, the US-led coalition is not bombing IS oil trucks, he added.
Meanwhile, Russia said that Turkey and US failed to notify the UN Security Council of the extent of Daesh oil smuggling activities, Russia Today reported.
“We’ve got serious complaints about the implementation of [UN] resolution (#2199, banning financing of the terrorist organization),” Russian envoy Vitaly Churkin told RIA Novosti news agency.
“Under Resolution 2199, adopted on our initiative in February, countries are obliged to provide information (about financing terrorists) to the Security Council – if they have such information. That means the Americans had to provide such information, and of course Turkey, which should have reported any illegal [oil] trade going on there. They didn’t do it,” Churkin said.
“We’ve just been to the Pentagon and two several star generals were telling us about (US-led) coalition actions. I asked them a very simple question: you’ve been flying there for a year, we’ve been there for two months and already provided many photos showing that oil is smuggled through the Turkish border. Didn’t you know about it? They must have known, and if they did, they should have reported it to the Security Council,” the Russian UN envoy told RIA Novosti in an interview.