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
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)
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(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. (Read more Syria stories.)

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