February 13, 2019 / 12:14 AM / 3 days ago

Bombs damage Colombia's Mansoya and Cano Limon pipelines

BOGOTA (Reuters) - Colombian state-run oil company Ecopetrol reported two bomb attacks on its pipelines on Tuesday - the first caused a fire on the Mansoya Orito pipeline, while the second damaged the Cano Limon pipeline, spilling crude into a nearby ravine.

The Mansoya Orito, in southern Putumayo, close to the border with Ecuador, was hit overnight. It was not operating during the attack, Ecopetrol said in a statement early on Tuesday.

The 73.4-kilometer pipeline has capacity to transport about 24,000 barrels of crude daily from fields in Putumayo.

The Cano Limon attack occurred in the late afternoon, the company said in a later statement, in the municipality of Teorama in Norte de Santander province, near the border with Venezuela.

The bomb caused crude spillage into a ravine, Ecopetrol said, calling on residents not to approach the area or drink water from the ravine.

Clashes taking place in the area were preventing the entry of technical staff and equipment, the statement added, without providing more details.

The company did not say who was responsible for either attack, but the National Liberation Army (ELN) rebels are active in both areas and frequently bomb oil infrastructure.

Cano Limon was also attacked over the weekend, the sixth attack this year.

There were more than 80 attacks on the 485-mile (780-km) pipeline in 2018, which kept it offline for most of last year.

The ELN has about 2,000 combatants and opposes multinational companies, saying they seize natural resources without benefiting Colombians.

Reporting by Helen Murphy and Julia Symmes Cobb; Editing by Bernadette Baum and Grant McCool

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