Last night sources reported that an attack on the Egypt natural gas pipeline was sabotaged that resulted in explosion. Today, Gas company officials say the explosion was caused by a leak not an attack. Both stories prevail.
Jerusalem Post has a different take on the explosion: Sinai natural gas pipeline blast blamed on leak
An explosion shook a gas terminal in Egypt’s northern Sinai Peninsula on Saturday, setting off a massive blaze that was contained by shutting off the flow of gas to neighboring Jordan and Israel, officials and witnesses said.
Egypt’s natural gas company said the fire was caused by a gas leak, but a local security official said an explosive device was detonated inside the terminal and the regional governor said he suspected sabotage.
Report: Gas pipeline to Israel set ablaze in Egypt
A gas pipeline was set on fire in the Egyptian Sinai town of El Arish on Saturday in a suspected terrorist attack, the country’s state media reported.
Egyptian authorities have stopped pumping the gas in the pipeline to Israel after it was blown up by unknown people, according to state-run Nile TV.
State-run Nile TV described it as “one of the main gas pipelines” there. The state-run MENA news agency said it was a suspected terrorist attack.
Al Jazeera English and Egypt State Television is reporting:
It has been reported that the gas pipeline running to Ashkelon in Israel has not been affected but the Jordanian route has been damaged by Saturday’s explosion.
There were no immediate reports of any casualties as a result of the blast.
“Saboteurs took advantage of the security situation and blew up the gas pipeline,” a state television correspondent reported, saying there was a big explosion.
State TV quoted an official as saying that the “situation is very dangerous and explosions were continuing from one spot to another” along the pipeline.
“It is a big terrorist operation”, a state TV reporter said.
Residents in the area also reported a huge explosion and said flames were raging in the area.
According to a security source, the Egyptian army closed the main source of the gas supply to the pipeline.
“The armed forces and the authorities managed to close the main the source of flow and are trying to control the fires,” the source said.
Read the rest Al Jazeera English.
Egypt Gas Pipeline Attacked
Sinai Bedouins are also widely suspected of having bombed a natural-gas pipeline that connects Egypt with Jordan and Syria in June. That attack followed a series of violent confrontations with police.
One person close to the Sinai Bedouin said he doubted they were involved in the current attack.
Egypt supplies all of Jordan’s gas needs, amounting to some 240 million cubic feet a day used to fuel power plants as well as for heating and cooking. Egypt is also a major supplier of gas to Israel.
There were conflicting reports as to which branch of the pipeline were affected.