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Media: French company paid taxes to ISIS and traded oil

Lafarge bought in 2007 some 150 kilometres (95 miles) northeast of Aleppo

Baku. 22 June. REPORT.AZ/ French cement maker Lafarge entered into deals with armed groups in Syria, including ISIS, to protect its business interests in the country.\

Report infoms, this information was provided by the French daily Le Monde.

The company did not respond to queries from AFP over the allegations, saying only that "Lafarge's absolute priority has always been ensuring the safety and security of its staff."

At the heart of the "worrying deals" alleged by Le Monde is a cement works that Lafarge bought in 2007 some 150 kilometres (95 miles) northeast of Aleppo.

The Jalabiya cement works went into operation in 2011.

"Until 2013, production kept up despite the growing instability in the region due to the Syrian crisis which began in 2011," the French daily wrote.

In 2013, ISIS began taking control of towns and roads around the factory.

Le Monde reported it had seen letters sent by Lafarge managers in Syria "revealing arrangements that Lafarge made with the terrorist group to continue production until September 19, 2014."

In another case a "pass stamped with an ISIS stamp and endorsed by the (group's) finance chief in the Aleppo region" proves the company had struck a deal with ISIS to allow for free circulation of its goods, the newspaper reported.

In order to keep making cement Lafarge bought licences from and paid taxes to ISIS middle-men and oil traders, the newspaper alleged.

Lafarge has confirmed to AFP it had owned the Jalabiyeh cement works "between 2010 and 2014", but did not directly address the allegations.

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