Fatal attack on Khor Mor gas field in Iraqi Kurdistan leaves four Yemenis dead

Fatal attack on Khor Mor gas field in Iraqi Kurdistan leaves four Yemenis dead
Four Yemeni nationals were killed and two others wounded in an assault on the Khor Mor gas field in Iraqi Kurdistan.
3 min read
28 April, 2024
The deadly attack was condemned globally and internationally  [Getty]

Four Yemeni nationals were killed and two others were wounded when a suicide drone hit the Khor Mor gas field in Sulaimaniyah province in Iraq’s autonomous Kurdistan region late on Friday. 

The Khor Mor gas field, located to the southwest of Sulaimaniyah is being developed by the UAE's Dana Gas company and produces natural gas for almost 80 percent of the Kurdistan region's power plants.  

Ramik Ramazan, the mayor of Chamchamal, confirmed the casualties, stating that the victims, Yemeni experts, were working in the field.

“Four Yemeni experts were killed and two others were wounded as a result of an attack on the Khor Mor gas at 6:45 pm on Friday, April 26,” Ramazan told The New Arab.  He said that the targeted area is near a new site plant now being developed, and was attacked previously. 

He added that the victims' bodies are currently at Sulaimaniyah’s morgue, awaiting necessary procedures before being repatriated to Yemen.

Last year, the gas field was targeted several times with Katyusha rockets, but no casualties were reported.

The attack was condemned locally and internationally, and both Kurdish and Iraqi central authorities are conducting an investigation.  

Prime Minister Masrour Barzani of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) denounced the attack as a "terrorist act" and urged Iraqi authorities to diligently pursue the perpetrators, emphasizing the severity of such assaults on energy infrastructure.

“I urge the federal government to credibly investigate, hold the perpetrators accountable, and provide lasting assurances to our people. According to the initial information the attacks come from a nearby region within Iraq,” he said in a post on the X platform.

“Attacks on energy hubs that power millions of homes in the Kurdistan Region and Iraqi provinces are indefensible. These attacks also sabotage efforts by Erbil and Baghdad to develop the energy sector. They happen with disturbing frequency and amount to war crimes.” 

Despite no claim of responsibility, the impact on electricity generation was severe, with the Khor Mor field's output dropping by nearly 2,500 megawatts. The joint statement from the KRG's electricity and natural resources ministries outlined efforts to restore normalcy.

Currently, electricity generation stands at 1,260 MW, according to government sources.

In response, Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia' al-Sudani ordered the formation of an investigative committee to determine the circumstances surrounding the attack on Khor Mor, while promising to punish the perpetrators.

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US Ambassador to Iraq Alina L. Romanowski condemned the attack, emphasizing the need for a thorough investigation to bring the responsible parties to justice.

In September 2021, Dana Gas announced that it had secured US$250 million in financing from the US International Development Finance Corporation to fund an expansion of gas production at the Khor Mor plant.