Exxon Mobil has started talks with other international oil operators to sell its stake in Iraq's West Qurna-1 oilfield, a senior Iraqi oil official said on Wednesday, citing a letter the U.S. company sent to the government.

"Exxon has stated in its letter that it has started discussions with some international oil companies to sell its stake in West Qurna-1," Abdul-Mahdy al-Ameedi, Iraq's contract's directorate chief, told reporters.

(Reporting by Ahmed Rasheed; Patrick Markey)