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Iraq’s Biggest Oil Refinery Attacked, Production Lines Halted

Three production lines at Iraq’s biggest oil refinery in the northern city of Baiji were destroyed and four engineers were killed in an attack by militants, Iraqi state television reported.

The militants blew up kerosene and benzene production units at the refinery, Reuters news agency cited the governor of Salahuddin province as saying. The refinery produces 11 million liters of gasoline, 7 million liters of benzene and 4.5 million liters of kerosene daily, it said.

Crude oil capped its biggest weekly gain in two years yesterday on concern about interruptions to Middle East supplies following unrest in Libya. Protests ignited by the ouster of Tunisia’s president last month and fanned by the Feb. 11 fall of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak have also spread to Yemen and Bahrain.

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