Arabic press review: The great Mosul oil scam, and slick visa fraudsters


Oil around Mosul is being looted by various groups, as Saudi Arabia plans to host Syrian opposition meeting

An Iraqi soldier guards an oil well, set ablaze by retreating IS fighters, south of Mosul (AFP)
Mohammad Ayesh's picture
Last update: 
Thursday 10 August 2017 14:48 UTC

Mosul oil looting

Organised criminals are looting and smuggling oil from fields south of Mosul for several influential parties in the country, the Arabi21 website has reported a "key source" as saying.

The website quoted the anonymous source as saying: "Najma and Qayyarah oil fields in southern Mosul have been heavily looted ever since they have been regained them from IS in last August."

The source reportedly said that "the looted oil is being smuggled into Iraqi Kurdistan and the capital Baghdad, amid the silence of the authorities in the province."

Syrians refuse to leave Jordan

Syrian refugees living in northern Jordan are refusing to return home due to the daily violations of a shaky "truce" in southern Syria, according to the Jordanian newspaper al-Sabeel.

On 9 July, a ceasefire agreement between the regime's forces and the opposition forces in southwestern Syria entered into force after months of previously undisclosed meetings between the US, Russia and Jordan.

According to the newspaper, "the war machine did not remain silent for long, as the Syrian regime violated many of the truce zones, repeatedly targeting several districts in the province of Daraa, bordering Jordan."

Syrian refugees from the south of the country represent a high proportion of registered refugees in Jordan, according to the latest statistics from the UN, accounting for 275,558 out of 657,334 Syrian refugees in Jordan.

Soon … Syrian meeting in Riyadh

Riad Seif, the president of the Syrian National Coalition, has said that Saudi Arabia intends to host an expanded meeting of the Syrian opposition, including the High Negotiations Committee,  in order to discuss the challenges of the current and upcoming stages, according to Saudi newspaper al-Sharq al-Awsat.

Seif's statement followed his meeting with Saudi Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Adel bin Siraj Mirdad in Riyadh, which coincided with a meeting between the Saudi foreign minister, Adel al-Jubeir, and the Russian ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Sergei Kozlov.

Seif also revealed the coalition's intention to set up a national fund to cover the costs of running the interim government in Syria, by holding a conference of Syrian businessmen who support the Syrian people, in an attempt to provide Syrians with stability at home.

Algeria: Fraudsters sell Schengen visa

In Algeria, fraudsters are taking money from Schengen visa applicants, claiming to be able to speed up the process and avoid delays, according to Algerian newspaper al-Shorouk.

Visa applications for France and EU countries are not handled directly by the Algerian government, but through a proxy company, and the applicant has to wait for days or weeks before being allowed to apply.

The TLS Contact Company reiterated to the paper that visa applications for France and Europe are free and those who are asking for money to provide a speedier service are just fraudsters, according to the Algerian newspaper.

* Arabic press review is a digest of reports that are not independently verified as accurate by Middle East Eye