ExxonMobil returns to South West Iraq, Qurna 1 oilfield after evacuating the premise a month ago. The oil giant returned with 22 foreign employees with more expected this week.
On May 18th, the US State Department for departure of non-emergency US government employees from the embassy in Baghdad and consulate in Erbil. Visa services were also suspended.
Iraqi Oil Minister, Thamer Ghabhdan suggests that the action to withdraw was motivated by political reasons and not by security or threats and says it was “unacceptable and unjustified”.
In late May the decision was finalized to return the foreign employees to the ExxonMobil work site after the iraqi government agreed to add additional security at the site as well as within the residential areas.