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Kuwait desert oil spill sparks 'state of emergency' - company

KUWAIT CITY, Kuwait, March 22 ----- The Kuwait Oil Company declared a "state of emergency" over an oil spill on land, in an incident decried by environmental activists as a "recurring problem" in the energy-rich Gulf state.

The emergency was sparked by an "oil leak in the west of the country", the state-owned company said in a statement, as video posted by Kuwaiti media showed a gushing pipe surrounded by a large slick of oil. "No injuries have occurred as a result of the leak and production has not been affected," company spokesman Qusai Al-Amer was quoted as saying, adding that no toxic fumes had been reported. The leak "occurred on land but not in a residential area", he later told AFP.

Teams have been dispatched to determine the source of the leak and contain the incident, Al-Amer said, declining to give the exact location or the extent of the spill. Kuwait is a major oil-producing country where nearly 90 percent of government revenues come from oil. The key member within the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is currently producing about 2.7 million barrels per day.

The Kuwait Oil Company has previously reported oil leaks in its fields in 2020 and 2016.



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