The state-run Iraq Drilling Company started to drill and repair wells in the Hamrin mountains north of Baghdad for the first time in 21 years, according to Bloomberg.
The company, affiliated with the country’s Oil Ministry, started to work on a total of 72 wells this week, the state-sponsored Iraqiya television said, citing Idriss Mohsen al-Yaseri, director general of the drilling company.
The company is due to drill 12 wells in 2011 and 18 next year, he said.
The Hamrin mountains had been a haven for insurgents, including members of al-Qaeda, after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq that ousted the regime of President Saddam Hussein. U.S.-Iraqi forces waged battles against insurgents in the mountains in recent years.