DUBAI, Sept 25 A gas pipeline feeding Yemen's
only liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminal was blown up
again in the early hours of Tuesday morning, the operating
Yemen's oil and gas pipelines have been repeatedly sabotaged
since anti-government protests created a power vacuum in 2011
that armed groups have exploited to cause fuel shortages and
slash export earnings for the impoverished country.
The 320-km pipeline that supplies the $4.5-billion plant has
been attacked several times by suspected al Qaeda-linked gunmen
after military strikes on Islamist militants.
"Yemen LNG confirms the sabotage of the 38-inch gas pipeline
that links the block 18 to the Balhaf terminal on the Gulf of
Aden," the company said in a statement, adding that nobody was
injured in the blast.
The latest explosion occurred at 0420 local time (0120 GMT),
about 35 km north of the Balhaf Liquefaction Plant on the Gulf
of Aden run by France's Total.
The Balhaf facility, which opened in 2009, has the capacity
to supply up to 6.7 million tonnes and delivers LNG, gas cooled
to liquid for export by ship, under long term contracts to GDF
Suez, Total and Korea Gas Corp.
The pipeline that carries gas from fields in the interior to
the coastal export facility was attacked in late April, just
days after reopening following a previous attack.
It resumed production following that attack in late May and
Yemeni soldiers were deployed to try to protect the pipeline in
June. But it was still blown up again in late August, the last
such attack until the latest attack on Tuesday.
(Reporting by Daniel Fineren; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)
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