Yemeni army foils bombing attempt against gas pipeline

Source:Xinhua Published: 2012-10-16 9:11:59

The Yemeni armed forces managed Monday to defuse an improvised explosive device (IED) planted beside a gas pipeline in the troubled southeastern province of Shabwa, a government official told Xinhua.

The improvised explosive device linked with flexible wires and batteries was detected by an army patrol unit beside the main gas pipeline that transfers Yemen's liquefied natural gas (LNG) to the Belhaf export terminal in the Gulf of Aden, the government official said on condition of anonymity.

A squad of the bomb disposal unit had arrived on time and managed to defuse the explosive device, the government source said, adding that the botched bombing attempt was probably masterminded by militants of the Al Qaeda group.

Scores of army troops in charge of guarding the oil field were deployed to thwart any imminent attacks by the al-Qaida members, according to the official.

Yemen's only LNG terminal began exporting natural gas again this week after being forced to shut when its feed pipeline was blown up in late September.

The 320-km pipeline, linking oil-producing Marib province to Belhaf LNG export facility in Yemen's restive south, has been repeatedly targeted by al-Qaida operatives.

Oil revenues make up more than 70 percent of the state budget, while oil and gas products account for over 90 percent of Yemen's exports.

Yemen's oil production rapidly declined from more than 400,000 barrels per day at the beginning of the past decade to the current 270,000 barrels per day.

Despite the army reinforcements and high security measures at the country's oil projects, Al Qaeda militants have attacked the main LNG pipeline several times in recent months.

Posted in: Mid-East

blog comments powered by Disqus