Headquarters of several global oil companies in Iraq including ExxonMobil hit by rockets

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A rocket landed at the headquarters of several global oil companies, including US giant ExxonMobil, in Iraq’s southern city of Basra early on Wednesday, wounding two Iraqi workers.

It was the latest in a spate of attacks on oil infrastructure in the region.

The rocket hit the Burjesia residential and operations headquarters west of Basra, Iraqi police said.

According to Al Jazeera, local security official confirmed Exxon evacuated some 20 foreign staff immediately. Other companies operating at the site include Royal Dutch Shell PLC and Italian Eni SpA.

“The oil ministry is saying that oil production in the area has not been affected by this attack,” Stratford said, adding the security official described the rocket used as a Katyusha.

“[But] we are seeing what can only be described as an increase in frequency of such incidents, over the last month and a half there have been a number involving rockets fired at what has been interpreted to be foreign interests here,” he added.

Earlier, Iran declared it “will not wage war against any nation” after the US announced that a further 1,000 troops are to be sent to the Middle East amid rising tensions.

The US move, announced by the acting defence secretary, Patrick Shanahan, comes after the US blamed Iran for attacks on two oil tanker ships last week, which has raised fears of a confrontation, and Tehran declaring it had increased its rate of uranium enrichment.

Last Thursday, two explosions occurred on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman. Four oil vessels were targetted in May, also near the Strait of Hormuz – a key transit route for oil and gas from the Middle East.

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