In Kirkuk, people demonstrated against lack of Kerosene

Kirkuk, people wait in long queue to receive kerosene, January 28, 2020. Photo:Soran Mohammed

soran Mohammed-Kirkuk

People in Kirkuk wait in lines for days to receive 50 liters of kerosene, but Directorate of Oil Products states everyone receives kerosene without any problems.

Yesterday, January 28, in Iskan neighborhood, people waited in long queue to receive kerosene and later demonstrated as they could not receive it.

“I have been in the line since 6:00 a.m. with this white beard (indicating how old he is) and cannot survive this crowd queue for 50 liters of kerosene,” Hassan Ali, 63, said.

Ali was among the protestors and demanded a limit to that “injustice” and a solution for the problem.

The protestors closed the station for half an hour and did not let any driver to refuel their cars.

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Kirkuk, people protest againt lack of distribution of kerosene, January 28, 2020. Photo: Soran Mohammed

Ibrahim Amir, a young protestor, explained that he waited for two days in the queue and was supposed to receive kerosene, but after waiting for two days, yesterday at 8:30 a.m. the directorate told them that they do not distribute kerosene.

“We are not the mock of this authority and government. We cannot be quiet. We started demonstrating because our city is on a sea of oil,” Amir added.

With the start of winter, kerosene is provided to people. Every family receives 50 liter per month for 10,000 IQD ($8).

Kawa Rashid, head of Directorate of Oil Products, in a press conference said, “those who demonstrated are not family receivers of kerosene. They are those who receive kerosene for people in return for some money.  We have prohibited them from receiving kerosene from the public gas stations, they can do it at the private stations, so that ordinary people can easily receive kerosene.”

Press conference of Kawa Rashid, head of Directorate of Oil Products, January, 2020. Photo: Soran Mohammed

He insisted that every citizen has the right to receive kerosene but the other people do not. In Kirkuk, receiving kerosene for people in return for money is hundreds of people’s job. Rashid stated that those people’s job is not legal.

Rashid further explained that they provide 50 liters of kerosene to every family through ration cards, meaning they provide 650,000 liters every day. This is amount is given by the Ministry of Oil and increasing it is “not in their authority.”

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