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Title: Oil recoups some losses after report of Kyiv forces attacking Russia-backed rebels

Feb 17, 2022 12:05AM ET

By: AnalysisWatch

Oil partially recovered from a more than 2% drop in Asian trading on Thursday after Russian-backed rebels in eastern Ukraine accused Kyiv government forces of shelling their territory with mortars.

At 0422 GMT, U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was down 0.7% at $92.98 a barrel, having earlier fallen more than 2%.

At 0420 GMT, Brent crude was trading down 0.6% at $94.2, after also falling more than 2% earlier.

Russian-backed rebels in eastern Ukraine said Kyiv government forces used mortars to attack their territory on Thursday, violating agreements aimed at ending the conflict, Russia's state-run RIA news agency reported.

Oil prices earlier fell after France and Iran said the sides were closer to a deal to salvage the 2015 Iran nuclear deal with world powers, offsetting tensions over Ukraine.

In light of the new deal, South Korea, previously one of Tehran's top oil buyers in Asia, said on Wednesday it was holding working-level talks on resuming Iranian oil imports and unfreezing Iranian funds.

In a research report, Eurasia Group said earlier on Thursday that in the event of a deal, Iran could enter the market and increase supply faster than after the 2015 deal.

Oil markets have been dominated in recent weeks by Russia's threatening stance towards Ukraine, with fears that a supply disruption by the major producer in a tight global market could push oil prices to $100 a barrel.

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