November 6, 2014 / 9:29 AM / 3 years ago

Tribesmen blow up main Yemen oil export pipeline

SANAA (Reuters) - Yemeni tribesmen blew up the country’s main oil export pipeline on Thursday, forcing crude flows to stop, energy industry and tribal sources said, in the latest attack on a key source of foreign currency.

Yemen’s oil and gas pipelines have repeatedly been sabotaged, often by tribesmen who have feuds with the central government, causing fuel shortages and slashing export earnings for the impoverished country.

The sources said Thursday’s attack occurred in the area of Sirwah in Marib province, halting flows to export facilities on the Red Sea.

The last attack was on October 24 but pumping resumed the following day when repair teams fixed the pipeline.

Yemen has said that oil flows through the Marib pipeline, its main petroleum export route, at a rate of around 70,000 barrels per day (bpd). Before the spate of attacks began three years ago, the 270-mile (435-km) pipeline carried around 110,000 barrels per day to Ras Isa.

Most of Yemen’s output is from the Marib-Jawf area in the north, with the rest coming from Masila in the southeast.

Reporting By Mohammed Ghobari; Writing by Sami Aboudi; Editing by Dominic Evans

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