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UPDATE 3-Brent hits 2-wk low at $106, hit by Chinese data

Monday, 3 Feb 2014 | 6:18 AM ET

* China's Jan official PMI slips to six-month low

* Iraqi army bombards Falluja to prepare for ground assault

* Syrian forces kill 83 in Aleppo -activists

(Updates previous SINGAPORE)

LONDON, Feb 3 (Reuters) - Brent crude dropped to a two-week low on Monday at $106 a barrel as weak factory data from China stoked concerns about demand growth, but fresh violence in Iraq and Syria limited losses.

China's factory growth eased to an expected six-month low in January, hurt by weaker local and foreign demand and by worries of a wide slowdown across emerging markets. That weighed across most markets such as Asian shares and base metals as investors found a new reason to sell high-risk assets.

Brent crude slipped 47 cents to $105.93 a barrel by 1102 GMT. U.S. oil dropped 27 cents to $97.22.

Emerging market stocks and currencies have dropped in the past weeks as investors have cut their financial bets in developing nations in anticipation that the United States will continue to back away from a less easy monetary policy.

"For a long time, oil prices managed to defy the turmoil in the emerging economies and the falling equity markets. Now their resistance appears to have been broken," said a Commerzbank research note.

The slowdown in emerging nations may cap gains in oil demand growth, which has been driven primarily by China over the past decade while consumption in the West, often called the OECD (The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development) nations, slowed, Barclays said in a note.

While the West is improving, it may not help overshadow the slowdown in emerging nations, Barclays added.

The potential impact of political tensions on oil supplies are meanwhile expected to keep a floor under prices.

In Iraq, the army intensified its shelling of Falluja in preparation for a ground assault to regain control of the city, which has been under the control of militants for a month.

In Syria, military helicopters dropped more improvised "barrel bombs" on the northern city of Aleppo, a monitoring group said, bringing the death toll to at least 83 people in the latest episode of a campaign that many consider a war crime.

Syria is not vital in terms of oil shipments, but markets have been worried that the crisis there could spill across the Middle East to engulf major exporters.

(Additional reporting by Manash Goswami in Singapore; Editing by Jane Baird)