By John Lee.
A senior Turkish government official has told the Hürriyet Daily News that the Turkish government will continue to encourage Turkish energy companies to sign more agreements with the Kurdistan Regional Government, despite what it describes as Washington’s warnings not to take such steps as they risk partitioning the country.
"These are steps for the future", he said. "At a moment when numerous foreign companies are in the region, it would not be expected for Turkish companies to remain inactive."
The official added that "contrary to what foreign press is reporting, there are not any hidden agreements signed between the Turkish government and the KRG on oil and gas or on constructing a new pipeline."
Kurdistan started to export limited quantities of crude oil to Turkey last July without seeking the permission of the central government, which caused a strong reaction from Baghdad. The oil exported to Turkey is being refined into various products before being shipped back to northern Iraq.
(Source: Hürriyet Daily News)