UPDATE 3-Oil up near $108 on weak dollar; M. East tension
* U.S. fiscal cliff talks in stalemate
* Developments in Egypt, Syria, Yemen, Iran support oil
* Eyes on Wednesday's OPEC meeting, U.S. EIA data
(Updates previous SINGAPORE)
LONDON, Dec 11 (Reuters) - Brent crude oil rose to around $108 a barrel on Tuesday as a slightly weaker dollar and Middle East unrest supported prices, but stalled fiscal talks in the United States capped gains.
Brent crude was up 64 cents to $107.94 a barrel by 0929 GMT. U.S. crude was at $85.84, up 28 cents.
The dollar index edged down 0.1 percent on prospects of more monetary stimulus from the U.S. Federal Reserve.
Continued unrest in Egypt, fighting in Syria, pressure on Iran to stop its nuclear programme and the killing of a domestic senior intelligence officer in Yemen have lent support to oil prices.
"Middle East tensions support prices to some extent, and from an intra-day perspective they can easily push prices up 1 percent," said Filip Petersson, a commodities analyst at SEB in Stockholm.
"Although what has happened in Egypt or Syria has no direct impact on oil supply, it could do if the chain of events is negative."
Data showed that China's crude imports rose in November while refinery runs reached a record of more than 10.1 million barrels a day (bpd), although foreign trade data disappointed.
"Despite China's improving economy, prices could come under some pressure today as fresh uncertainty over Europe tempers sentiment," ANZ analysts wrote in a note.
Talks were held on Monday between the White House and House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner's office to break the U.S. fiscal debate stalemate, although neither side showed any sign that they were ready to give ground.
Economists say that going over the so-called U.S. fiscal cliff, which consists of steep tax hikes and budget cuts set to kick in next month, could throw the world's biggest oil consumer back into a recession.
"The fiscal cliff discussions have been going on for months and will continue possibly into next year, which will be a volatility overlay from one day to the next," SEB's Petersson said.
FOCUS ON SUPPLIES
Traders will be keeping a close watch on any changes in OPEC supply as the group meets in Vienna on Wednesday and on weekly U.S. oil inventories data to be released over the next two days.
"We have a substantial oversupply in the crude oil market, and it will be even more substantial in the first quarter," Petersson said, painting a bearish picture.
"I imagine they will hold on to the 30 million barrels per day quota, which would be good. At the moment they are producing more than that."
The 12 OPEC members are collectively producing about 1 million bpd of crude more than needed, swelling oil stocks at a time of weak demand, Iranian OPEC governor Mohammad Ali Khatibi said.
In the United States, commercial crude oil stockpiles were forecast to have fallen last week amid high refinery demand, while gasoline inventories were expected to rise, a preliminary Reuters poll of five analysts showed.
(Additional reporting by Florence Tan in Singapore; Editing by Jane Baird)