The end of October marked a high point in tensions between Iraq and its oil producing Kurdish region in the north.

Roughly two dozen oil tankers idly turned figure eights in the Mediterranean, filled with oil pumped from Kurdish Iraq that Iraq threatened to sue any country for purchasing, reported the New York Times. The Iraqi government claims to have exclusive rights to market oil from the Kurdish region, with profits split 83% to the Baghdad government and 17% to the Kurdish autonomous government.

The move was a political gamble on the...

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