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Oil smuggling in Syria worsens pollution in Euphrates River

The residents living near the Euphrates River in northeast Syria are suffering the consequences of water pollution mainly caused by oil spills resulting from smuggling operations between the areas held by the Kurdish forces and the Syrian government.
A displaced Syrian man works at a makeshift oil refinery near the village of Tarhin in an area under the control of Turkish-backed factions in the northern countryside of Aleppo, Syria, Feb. 25, 2021.
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Black oil spills are spotted on the banks of the Euphrates River in Syria, near the oil smuggling points between the areas controlled by the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the Syrian government-held areas. 

The Euphrates River, the longest in Western Asia and once the main drinking water source in the provinces of the Syrian al-Jazira region, is facing a real catastrophe in light of the soaring rates of pollutants in its water. The river stretches inside the Syrian territories over 610 kilometers (379 miles), flowing inside Syria from Jarablus city near the border with Turkey, passing through Raqqa and Deir ez-Zor and ending in al-Bukamal to pour toward the Iraqi territory.

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