Oil prices soared to their highest level for 10 years here, bursting through 35 dollars a barrel amid clear market nervousness about the escalating crisis in the Middle East, dealers said.
The Brent North Sea benchmark crude, which had closed at 31.79 dollars a barrel on Wednesday, surged more than 11 percent to 35.30 dollars by midafternoon as market players responded to an explosion involving a US warship in Aden and the deepening crisis in Israel and Palestine.
"It's a combination of Israel going ballistic and of the US destroyer," said Royal Bank of Scotland analyst Andrew Hartree, referring to Israeli attacks in the Palestinian territories and the Aden incident in which an inflatable raft rammed a US destroyer, triggering an explosion which killed at least four sailors. ”The market has just gone crazy," Hartree told AFP. – (AFP)
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