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Demonstrators block route leading to the Majnoon Oil Field in Basra Province

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At approximately 08:00 on 11 June, approximately 30 individuals demonstrated and blocked the southern side of the Yabani Bridge which leads to the Majnoon Oil Field in Qurna District, located in northeastern Basra Province. Protesters demanded employment opportunities, the dismissal of foreign workers and financial compensation for the loss of land due to recent flooding. Several individuals also threatened to conduct additional protests if their demands remain unresolved. Intermittent route closures were reported, with protesters reportedly permitting vehicle movements in some cases. Oil Police units responded to the incident and reopened the route, with no clashes reported.

This event follows two demonstrations near the West Qurna 1 and 2 oilfields in northern Basra Province on 29 May. Such activity tends to suggest an escalatory approach and efforts by local residents to amplify their demands in order to ensure their success. However, due to a heavy security presence surrounding these sites, the majority of these events are often short-lived and witness a swift security response as efforts are made to reopen critical routes.

The combination of these events suggests a nascent trend in demonstration activity influential to IOC sites, and underline the ongoing shortfalls in government services and employment. As the summer temperatures increase and associated government shortfalls are brought to the fore, additional demonstrations near government buildings and IOC sites are possible in the short-term. No violence has thus far been reported, though escalations cannot be ruled out.

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