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US military smuggles new batches of crude oil from Syria’s Hasakah to Iraq: Report

In this file picture, a US armored vehicle drives past an oil field in the countryside of al-Qahtaniyah town in Syria's northeastern Hasakah province near the Turkish border. (Photo by AFP)

The US military has reportedly used dozens of tanker trucks to smuggle crude oil from Syria’s northeastern province of Hasakah to bases in neighboring Iraq, where American forces and trainers are stationed.

Syria’s official news agency SANA, citing local sources in al-Ya'rubiyah town, reported that a convoy of 40 tankers, laden with oil from the energy-rich Jazira district and Eastern Region, left Syria through the illegal Mahmoudiya border crossing on Thursday, and headed towards Iraqi territories.

Another convoy, consisting of nine tankers and several flatbed trucks carrying damaged armored military vehicles, left Syrian territories for Iraq shortly afterwards, according to the report.

Local sources added that six armored vehicles belonging to the US occupation forces escorted the second convoy until it reached the border crossing.

The US military has stationed forces and equipment in northeastern Syria, with the Pentagon claiming that the deployment is aimed at preventing the oilfields in the area from falling into the hands of Daesh terrorists.

Damascus, however, maintains that the deployment is meant to plunder the country's rich mineral resources.

Former US president Donald Trump admitted on more than one occasion that American forces were in the Arab country for its oil.

‘US military presence in Syria constitutes blatant occupation’

Meanwhile, Deputy Chairman of the Federation Council of the Russian Parliament Konstantin Kosachev says the presence of US military forces in Syria lacks any legal justification, describing the deployment as a flagrant occupation of the territories of a member state of the United Nations.

“Americans have expropriated Syrian lands, and are plundering the country’s natural wealth for the sake of their own military, political and commercial objectives,” the senior Russian lawmaker told SANA in an exclusive interview in Moscow on Thursday.

He went on to lament the positions of the United Nations regarding Syria, arguing that while the world body, under pressure from the United States, rushes to hold meetings on the situation in the war-battered Arab nation it falls short of dealing with Washington’s intervention in the domestic affairs of other countries.

Kosachev asserted that the United Nations does not carry out its duties and does not devote strenuous efforts to maintain peace and security across the globe, or at least in Syria.

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