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Iraq to Turkey oil pipeline closed by blast

23 July 2012

Turkish authorities confirmed on July 21 that a bomb blast had damaged the Kirkuk-Ceyhan oil pipeline in Mardin province, south Turkey. A second line that runs parallel was not damaged, but was also briefly shut down as a precaution. The two pipelines carry about 25 million tonnes of crude oil a year

Provincial governor Turhan Ayvaz told local media the explosion was most likely an act of sabotage. "The explosion and the ensuing fire left no casualties but resulted in material damage," he said.

PKK rebels, fighting for autonomy in Turkey's Kurdish-dominated southeast, have bombed the pipeline before, and local sources said the latest blast was probably also their work.

The fire was quickly extinguished and repairs to the pipeline have started. There is as yet no indication when oil flows to Ceyhan will resume.

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