Iraq imposes petrol rationing

10 December 2003
The Iraqi Oil Ministry on 10 December imposed temporary rationing on petrol due to the ongoing shortages in the country. 'Each driver can have only 50 litres, not more, at the price of NID 20 ($0.01) a litre,' said Oil Ministry spokesman, Asem Jihad. He added that the ministry would also start strictly implementing a new law, which came into effect on 10 December, allowing for long prison terms to be given to those caught selling petrol on the black market.

Queues at petrol stations have continued to grow in length in recent months, despite increased national oil output. Coalition soldiers have been forced to guard petrol stations and have become easy targets for militants. In the latest attack, a US soldier and a local Kurdish official were shot and killed on 10 December at a petrol station in the northern city of Mosul. 'We had two vehicles drive by and shoot at two sides of the street,' said a US military official in Mosul. 'They fired on the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) offices and they fired on the gas station and then they sped off.'

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