Venezuela Gas Pipeline Tract Explodes

Venezuela Gas Pipeline Tract Explodes

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A tract of a gas pipeline in eastern Venezuela suffered an explosion on Saturday afternoon, according to a report from state oil company PDVSA, an incident the country's oil minister blamed on an attack.

The explosion at the 36-inch pipeline providing natural gas to the Pigap II gas reinjection plant in northern Monagas state prompted PDVSA to temporarily shut the plant in order to halt the flames and evaluate the damages to the pipeline, according to the report.

Oil Minister Tareck El Aissami in a brief statement on state television late on Saturday called the incident a "terrorist attack," without providing details about who was responsible or about the impact on the plant and pipeline, Reuters reported.

OPEC-member Venezuela is home to massive crude and natural gas reserves.

Officials have in the past blamed explosions at pipelines and refineries, as well as blackouts and other infrastructure failings, on attacks aimed at sabotaging the country's economy.  

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