(Bloomberg) -- Iraq’s Al-Ahdab oil field resumed production about a week after operations halted there due to protests by security guards amid unrest in one of OPEC’s biggest producers.

Output resumed at Al Ahdab at full capacity, or 70,000 barrel a day, according to an Iraqi oil official who couldn’t be identified. The protesters left the site of the field located in the central province of Wasit after authorities accepted to meet their demand for permanent employment contracts, the official said.

The security guards had blocked access to employees into the production site on January 19, prompting a halt in production at the field developed by China National Petroleum Corp.

Around 600 people have died and thousands of others have been wounded in clashes between security forces and protesters since Oct. 1. Iraqis are protesting against government corruption, poor services, interferences by foreign powers and are calling for an overhaul of the ruling class. The protests led to a brief halt of the Nasiriya field and refinery in December.

Iraq pumped about 4.65 million barrels a day of crude in December, putting it second behind Saudi Arabia among members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

To contact the reporter on this story: Khalid Al-Ansary in Baghdad at kalansary@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nayla Razzouk at nrazzouk2@bloomberg.net

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