Russia overtook Saudi Arabia as the world’s largest crude producer in July, just one month after the kingdom took the top spot for the first time in six years.
Production in Saudi Arabia, OPEC’s largest producer, fell to 9.8 million barrels a day (bpd) in July, down from 10.1 million bpd the previous month, according to data from the Joint Organization Data Initiative.
Russia pumped 9.92 million bpd in July, up by 20,000 barrels from June, said the website.
Saudi Arabia production reached a 31-year high in March as the Gulf state moved to compensate for declining Iranian exports.
The World Bank is willing to provide Lebanon with financial and technical assistance to help offset the impact the volatile situation in the region could have on the country’s economy, it has said.
This strong message of support came from the Bank’s vice president for the Middle East and North Africa, Inger Andersen, as she wrapped up a two-day official visit to Beirut on Thursday.
“Lebanon is going through difficult times, some of this driven by factors beyond its control,” Andersen said.
“In all my meetings with senior officials, with the private sector and with representatives of civil society, we discussed these multiple challenges but we also talked about opportunities in Lebanon which can be exploited to spur growth and create inclusive job opportunities,” Andersen said.
Iraq has denied a Western intelligence report which said Iranian aircraft had flown weapons and military personnel over Iraqi airspace to Syria to help President Bashar al-Assad battle an 18-month-old uprising.
The allegation, reported by Reuters on Wednesday, said arms transfers were organized by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.
Although charges that Iraq has allowed Iran to send arms to Syria are not new, the report said the extent of such shipments is far greater and more systematic than has been publicly acknowledged, thanks to a deal between senior Iraqi and Iranian officials.
Iraq's autonomous Kurdistan region has said it will receive 147,000 barrels of oil products per day, as part of a deal concluded with Baghdad to end a dispute over oil payments.
The deal, which was first outlined last week, will solve only few points of a broader feud between Baghdad and Kurdistan over oil exports, energy policy and territory which have become increasingly contentious topics.
"This deal cannot solve all the problems currently but it is considered a good step," Kurdish Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani said in a statement posted on the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) website on Thursday.
Muslims angered by cartoons mocking the Prophet Mohammad should follow his example of enduring insults without retaliating, Egypt's highest Islamic legal official said.
Western embassies tightened security in Sanaa, fearing the cartoons published in a French magazine on Wednesday could lead to more unrest in the Yemeni capital where crowds attacked the U.S. mission last week over an anti-Islam film made in America.
In the latest of a wave of protests against that video in the Islamic world, several thousand Shi'ite Muslims demonstrated in the northern Nigerian town of Zaria, burning an effigy of U.S. President Barack Obama and crying "Death to America".