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Strait of Hormuz: War of words over Iran oil blockade threats (VIDEO)

In an escalating war of words over the Strait of Hormuz, a key oil supply route in the Persian Gulf, Iran today rejected a US warning to Tehran over threats to block oil shipments.

Oil spill at Shell deepwater field off Nigeria

Production at the 200,000-barrels-per-day oil field has been shut down temporarily as a "precautionary measure," Shell said, without indicating when production would resume.

BP says Halliburton destroyed oil spill evidence

At a hearing in a federal court in New Orleans on Monday, BP said Halliburton, an oilfields services provider, deliberately got rid of test results showing that it used unstable cement to secure the Macondo well that exploded.

Thousands join Keystone pipeline protest in Washington DC

If plans are approved by Obama, then the pipeline is expected to open by as early as 2013.

Uganda: Ulterior motives in US, LRA fight

KAMPALA — The Obama administration's decision to send troops to Uganda may be more complex than a mission against the Lord's Resistance Army.

ExxonMobil wins Russian deal for Arctic oil exploration

The Arctic oil exploration deal supersedes a similar partnership reached between Rosneft and BP, the British oil giant, earlier this year.

EU urged to ban Syrian oil imports

Rights groups are pushing the EU to stop paying for Syrian oil, money they say goes to fund the regime’s brutal crackdown.
Syria oil sanctionsEnlarge
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad could face economic woes if the EU santions oil imports from Syria (HASSAN AMMAR/Stringer/AFP/Getty Images)

International human rights organizations Human Rights Watch (HRW)  and Avaaz have launched a campaign to pressure the EU to ban imports of Syrian oil, the sake of which they say directly funds the regime’s brutal crackdown on pro-democracy protestors.

HRW sent a letter to the EU High Representative and foreign ministers of the 27 member states on August 13 urging the EU to freeze the assets of the Syrian National Oil Company, Syrian National Gas Company and the Central Bank of Syria “until the Syrian government ends gross human rights abuses against its citizens”.

While most of Syria’s oil production is used for its own consumption, 95 percent of oil exported goes to Europe, mainly Germany, Holland, France and Italy, all of whom have denounced the violence in Syria, but have yet to leverage their trade with Syria in order to end the crackdown.

HRW said local human rights activists reported at least 231 anti-government protesters and other civilians have been killed in August so far. The confirmed death toll of civilians is now over 2,000, while several hundred members of the security forces have also been killed since the uprising began six months ago.

“Syria’s authorities are still killing their own people despite multiple efforts by other countries, including former allies, to make them stop,” Lotte Leicht, EU director at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement Tuesday “It’s time to show the government that Europeans won’t help to fund its repression.”

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