Mar 28, 2021 12:17 UTC
  • US trucks cross into Iraq with smuggled Syrian wheat: Report

Dozens of trucks carrying Syrian wheat crop from Hasakah province have crossed the border into Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdistan region amid reports that the US military is systematically smuggling basic commodities out of Syria.

Local sources told Syria’s official news agency SANA that 38 military vehicles loaded with wheat entered the Iraqi territory on Saturday through al-Waleed border crossing.

It came only two days after a convoy of over a dozen US military trucks left the same Syrian region for northern Iraq, reportedly carrying tens of tons of grain.

SANA reported at the time that 18 military vehicles rumbled through Semalka border crossing, and headed toward Iraq.

The US military has stationed forces and equipment in northeastern Syria, with the Pentagon claiming that the deployment is aimed at preventing oilfields in the area from falling into the hands of Daesh terrorists. Damascus says the deployment is meant to plunder the country's resources. 

Syrian Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Bassam Tomeh told al-Ikhbariyah TV on March 18 that the US and Takfiri terrorist groups were looting the country's oil reserves and that US troops controlled 90 percent of oilfields in northeast Syria.

He said the cost of direct and indirect damage to the Syrian oil sector stood at more than $92 billion.

The US first confirmed its exploitation of Syrian oil during a Senate hearing exchange between South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham and former US secretary of state Mike Pompeo in late July last year.