Egypt gas pipeline blast 311.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
An unidentified terrorist cell blew up the gas pipeline leading from Egypt to
Israel and Jordan Monday, Egyptian security sources said, forcing a shutdown in
the flow of natural gas for the third time since February.
took place in the early morning at a station along the pipeline in the northern
Sinai Peninsula at Bir Abd, 60 kilometers east of the Suez Canal, the sources
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National Infrastructures Minister Uzi Landau said the suspension of
gas deliveries would not affect the economy right away.
solutions for the immediate future,” Landau told the Knesset Finance Committee.
“We are dealing with the matter by changing the mix of fuels in power
No disruptions to power supply are expected.
simulated these situations in the past, and we are prepared.”
source said men with machine guns in a small truck forced guards at the pipeline
station to leave, then planted explosive charges.
“We do not have
sufficient information until now, but in principle the explosion happened in the
same way that the two previous explosions happened,” another security source
The natural gas company that runs the pipeline closed it
down after the explosion, the source said.
Witnesses said the sound of
the blast boomed out across the desert, frightening locals, and tongues of fire
could be seen above the station.
Explosions on February 5 and April 27
closed the pipeline for weeks.
The pipeline is run by Gasco, Egypt’s gas
transport company – a subsidiary of the national gas company EGAS.
claimed responsibility for Monday’s blast. Disgruntled Beduin in the area have
been blamed for attacking the pipeline in the past, as have Islamist extremists
opposed to Egypt’s 1979 peace treaty with Israel.