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‘Muslim Brotherhood plotting against GCC states’

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DOHA: In a war of words with the Muslim Brotherhood, Dubai’s police chief reiterated his accusation that the Egyptian group is plotting a regime change in GCC states.

Lieutenant General Dahi Khalfan, Dubai’s police chief was quoted yesterday in an interview published in the Kuwaiti daily Al Qabas as saying that the Muslim Brotherhood, the main Islamist force that emerged after the Arab Spring, is plotting to take over Gulf countries.

“My sources say the next step is to make Gulf governments (their ruling families) figurehead bodies only without actual ruling. The start will be in Kuwait in 2013 and in other Gulf states in 2016,” Khalfan said.

Khalfan sparked a controversy after threatening earlier this month to arrest renowned Islamic scholar and leading Brotherhood figure, Dr Yusuf Al Qaradawi, for criticising the United Arab Emirates for deporting Syrian protesters.

Reacting to the developments in the UAE, Mahmoud Ghazlan, Spokesman of Muslim Brotherhood, condemned the arrest warrant for Dr Al Qaradawi, Head of the International Union of Muslim Scholars.

Challenging the UAE establishment, Ghazlan said: “The United Arab Emirates cannot dare to arrest Sheikh Al Qaradawi. It is just a physiological war and propaganda. The cleric cannot be arrested.”

Meanwhile, the UAE government has asked the Egyptian authorities to explain its stand on the statement of Ghazlan.

Notably, Dr Al Qaradawi recently criticised the decisions of UAE government to cancel the residency permit of Syrian expatriates for staging protests against Syrian regime in Emirates and withdraw the citizenships of six Islamists who were found involved in terrorism funding.

General Secretary of GCC Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayyan also criticised Ghazlan’s account as an ‘irresponsible statement’.

He added that the statement is also against the efforts of UAE and Egypt to strengthen the bilateral relations.

Khalfan, highlighting the credibility of his statement, said his information is based on “leaks” from Western intelligence sources and said this “had been known to us.”

“If these leaks from Western intelligence were to be correct, by 2016 all Gulf rulers will be just figureheads with no actual power. I am warning Gulf states about these groups”, Khalfan said.

All of the six hydrocarbon-rich GCC member states namely Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE have been governed for centuries by ruling families.

Khalfan said the alleged plot will begin in Kuwait because “it is ready more than any other Gulf state… this is a strategy.”

Sunni Islamists made an impressive show in a February 2 snap election in Kuwait, securing more than 20 seats in the 50-member parliament.

The Peninsula

Apache Proceeds with Development of Balnaves Oil Field Offshore Western Australia

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Apache Corporation said that its subsidiary Apache Julimar Pty Ltd will proceed with development of the Balnaves oil field in Production License WA-49-L offshore Western Australia.

The field was discovered by Apache in 2009 during exploration and appraisal drilling in the Julimar-Brunello complex. Balnaves is a light, sweet oil accumulation in a separate reservoir in the Triassic Mungaroo formation, located adjacent to the large gas reservoirs of the Brunello gas field.

First production from the $438-million development is scheduled in 2014, with gross peak production of approximately 30,000 barrels of oil per day and estimated gross recoverable resource of 17 million barrels of oil and 30 billion cubic feet of gas. Two horizontal production wells will be connected to a floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel via subsea tiebacks. One water injection well will be used to maintain reservoir pressure. Gas will be reinjected into another reservoir for later production as part of the Wheatstone liquefied natural gas (LNG) Project.

Apache has agreed to lease the Armada Claire, an FPSO owned by Bumi Armada with production capability of 80,000 barrels of oil and 50 million cubic feet of natural gas per day and storage capacity for 750,000 barrels.

We are pleased to sanction our third operated oil development in Australia since 2007,” said Thomas M. Maher, Apache’s region vice president and managing director in Australia. “With the Van Gogh field on production and first output from Coniston expected in 2013, Balnaves will add to our position as one of Australia’s leading oil producers.”

The Julimar and Brunello fields are large gas discoveries that will be developed to provide gas for the Wheatstone LNG Project, operated by Chevron Australia Pty Ltd. Apache Julimar Pty Ltd is operator of the Julimar Development Project, the WA-49-L upstream component of the Wheatstone Project.

Apache Julimar Pty Ltd has a 65-percent interest in offshore license WA-49-L and a 13-percent equity interest in the Wheatstone project. KUFPEC Australia (Julimar) Pty Ltd, a subsidiary of Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Co. k.s.c., owns the remaining interest in the offshore license and a 7-percent interest in the Wheatstone project.

Apache Corporation is an oil and gas exploration and production company with operations in the United States, Canada, Egypt, the United Kingdom North Sea, Australia and Argentina.

Original Article

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