Gas Pipeline Suffers Damage in Syria

Wednesday, July 13, 2011 @ 02:07 PM gHale

In the first attack on the Syria’s oil industry amid a months long uprising against the regime, a natural gas pipeline suffered some severe damage. Officials were unclear on how the damage occurred.

One report has a bomb hitting the pipeline, while another has a fire causing the damage.

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Rami Abdul-Rahman from the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said residents in the eastern province of Deir el-Zour told him the explosion occurred on the pipeline in the area of Tayanah, near the border with Iraq.

Syria produces about 350,000 barrels of oil per day as well as natural gas.

Meanwhile, the Oil Ministry Other said a fire broke out on a pipeline that was under maintenance, but it was unclear if the blaze was accidental or sabotage. There were no casualties.

Syria’s state-run news agency said production continued using other pipelines.

Syria’s oil exports are among the main earners of foreign currency to the government, particularly now the country’s four-month-old uprising has hit the tourism industry. Last year, tourism accounted for roughly 12 percent of GDP and brought in $8 billion in hard currency.