According to an extensive report by Qatari-owned al-Araby al-Jadeed, ISIS sells crude to the not-so-black-market and Israel buys it.
One of the main buyers of oil from the Daesh’s major black market operation is Israel, according to a new report by al-Araby al-Jadeed, a Qatari-owned Middle East news outlet based in London.
The black-market oil trade in the region is headed by both Turkey and the Kurds, as they control a main border between Europe and Syria. They transport the oil from deep within ISIS-controlled regions in Syria to Western markets. There are an estimated 20,000-40,000 barrels of oil being produced daily in ISIS territory, producing a daily profit of approximately $1-1.5 million for the terror organisation.
According to the report, the oil originates primarily from the Dir A-Zur region in Syria and two separate oil fields in Iraq, reaching the Kurdish city of Zakhu, near the borders of Syria, Iraq and Turkey. At this point in the chain of sale, Israeli and Turkish mediators negotiate the prices in the relative safety of Kurdish territory, then the oil is smuggled to Silopi, a city in southeastern Turkey. In order to skirt international sanctions outlawing the purchase of oil from terror organisations, the oil is marked as a product of Kurdish Turkey and Iraq.
Sold to the Israeli mediator at the wholesale price of $15-18 per barrel, approximately $20 less than market value, the mediator is named as Dr. Farid in the report. Holding a dual Greek-Israeli citizenship, he is able to travel uninhibited between the countries, and transports the oil from various Turkish ports to Israeli ports.
The British economic journal Financial Times reported in August that Israel’s oil was 75% originated in Iraqi Kurdistan–an intentional ambiguity designed to throw off accusations of potential wrongdoing. Financial Times said that more than a third of oil exports originating in Iraqi Kurdistan go through the port of Ceyhan, a “potential gateway for ISIS-smuggled crude.”
An unnamed industry official told al-Araby al-Jadeed that “Israel has in one way or another become the main marketer of ISIS oil. Without them, most ISIS-produced oil would have remained going between Iraq, Syria and Turkey. Even the three companies would not receive the oil if they did not have a buyer in Israel.”
“Israel has in one way or another become the main marketer of IS oil. Without them, most ISIS-produced oil would have remained going between Iraq, Syria and Turkey,” the official added.
In response to al-Araby al-Jadeed’s extensive report, an ISIS spokesman contacted the newspaper on Skype from the Daesh stronghold of Raqqa, Syria.
The spokesman said “To be fair, the [Daesh] organisation sells oil from caliphate territories but does not aim to sell it to Israel or any other country,” adding “It produces and sells it via mediators, then companies, who decide whom to sell it to.”