Syrian Rebels Capture Contested Oilfield

Win after 3-day battle could mean serious revenue

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Nov 4, 2012 8:59 AM CST

(Newser) – Activists say Syrian rebels have captured an oilfield in the country's east after three days of fierce fighting with government troops protecting the facility. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights' chief Rami Abdul-Rahman says rebels overran the al-Ward oilfield in the province of Deir el-Zour near the border with Iraq today.

An activist in the area says the field was still functioning until shortly before the rebels seized it. Syria exported some 150,000 barrels of oil a day before European and US imposed sanctions last year. In 2010, Syria earned $4.4 billion by selling oil to EU countries alone.

In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, rebel fighters run for cover through smoke from an explosion as they try to repel a coordinated attack using mortar, tank and aerial artillery fire by loyalists to President Bashar Assad in the Jedida district of Aleppo, Syria.
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, rebel fighters run for cover through smoke from an explosion as they try to repel a coordinated attack using mortar, tank and aerial artillery fire by loyalists...   (Narciso Contreras)
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, rebel fighters sneak through residential buildings as they try to repel a coordinated attack using mortar, tank and aerial artillery carried out by loyalists to President Bashar Assad in the Jedida district of Aleppo, Syria.
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, rebel fighters sneak through residential buildings as they try to repel a coordinated attack using mortar, tank and aerial artillery carried out by loyalists to...   (Narciso Contreras)
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, smoke rises from an explosion as loyalists to President Bashar Assad launch a coordinated attack using mortar, tank and aerial artillery on rebel positions in the Jedida district of Aleppo, Syria.
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, smoke rises from an explosion as loyalists to President Bashar Assad launch a coordinated attack using mortar, tank and aerial artillery on rebel positions in the...   (Narciso Contreras)
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, rebel fighters carry an improvised explosive device as they try to repel a coordinated attack using mortar, tank and aerial artillery fire carried out by loyalists to President Bashar Assad in the Jedida district of Aleppo, Syria.
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, rebel fighters carry an improvised explosive device as they try to repel a coordinated attack using mortar, tank and aerial artillery fire carried out by loyalists...   (Narciso Contreras)
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, a rebel watches windows in an overlooking building as he awaits loyalists to President Bashar al-Assad during heavy fighting in Aleppo, Syria.
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, a rebel watches windows in an overlooking building as he awaits loyalists to President Bashar al-Assad during heavy fighting in Aleppo, Syria.   (Narciso Contreras)
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, a rebel fighter carries an improvised explosive device as they try to repel a coordinated attack using mortar, tank and aerial artillery fire carried out by loyalists to President Bashar Assad in the Jedida district of Aleppo, Syria.
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, a rebel fighter carries an improvised explosive device as they try to repel a coordinated attack using mortar, tank and aerial artillery fire carried out by loyalists...   (Narciso Contreras)
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, a rebel fighter keep an eye towards overlooking windows as he awaits for loyalists to President Bashar Assad to appear during a coordinated attack on rebels using mortar, tank and aerial artillery fire in the Jedida district of Aleppo, Syria.
In this Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 photo, a rebel fighter keep an eye towards overlooking windows as he awaits for loyalists to President Bashar Assad to appear during a coordinated attack on rebels using...   (Narciso Contreras)
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