25.8 C
Abuja
Sunday, March 29, 2020

Explosion rocks Libya oil pipeline in the south Ras Lanuf

An explosion hit a major oil pipeline south of the Libyan terminal of Ras Lanuf overnight between Wednesday and Thursday, a spokesman for Libya’s National Oil Corp (NOC) said.

Mohamed al-Harari said it was not clear what had caused the explosion at the pipeline, which runs from the Tibisti and Bayda fields and has been closed for more than two years.

An oil official based in eastern Libya, Mohamed al-Manfi, said the blast was a result of sabotage and said oil workers were trying to isolate the pipeline and contain the damage. 

Last week, Islamic State militants attacked Ras Lanuf and the nearby terminal of Es Sider. They killed at least 18 guards and set fire to seven oil storage tanks.

The militants have taken advantage of a security vacuum to expand their presence in Libya. Also on Thursday, a military official told Reuters that suspected Islamic State gunmen had attacked a Turkish company building a road near Maradah, about 160 km (100 miles) southeast of Ras Lanuf.

Eyewitnesses said four of the company’s Libyan employees had been abducted.

The NOC said on Thursday it had sent a tanker to remove oil from Ras Lanuf in an effort to limit the risk of more fires, but guards at the port blocked their access. 

The guards cited security concerns in not allowing the tanker to dock, NOC said in a statement. The company was still negotiating with the guards, it said. There was no immediate comment from the guards.

Ras Lanuf and Es Sider, two of Libya’s key export terminals, have been closed since December 2014. They lie between the city of Sirte, which is controlled by Islamic State, and the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi. 

Libya’s oil industry has been hit by frequent attacks, strikes and protests as the country slipped into political turmoil after Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown in 2011. Current production is under 400,000 barrels per day, less than a quarter of the 2011 high of 1.6 million.

However, production in the east has remained relatively stable. The NOC’s eastern branch, the Arabian Gulf Oil Co, said on Thursday it had exported 64 million barrels of crude in 2015, one of its best results in recent years, a spokesman said.

Omran al-Zwei said a total of 92 tankers had docked at the eastern port of Hariga to ship the oil out. A further 13 million barrels the company produced were refined in Libya for local use, at the eastern refineries of Sarir and Hariga and the western refinery of Zawiya, he said.

 

– REUTERS

Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply

Latest News

With 137 coronavirus cases Ghana to lockdown Accra, Kumasi

Ghana has announced a two-week lockdown in the country's two main regions - Kumasi and Accra metropolises from Monday to curb the spread of...

Bombs explodes in Akure, Nigeria, destroying over 100 houses(with pictures)

Over a hundred houses including churches and residential buildings have been destroyed by a large explosion which split the ever busy Akure/Owo road into...

Libya: Haftar forces capture Syrian mercenary recruited by Turkey

A video shared by Libyan National Army (LNA) allied to Gen. Khalifa Haftar, shows an alleged Syrian mercenary talking about being recruited by Turkey...

Guineans overwhelmingly vote to back new constitution

Guinea has voted to back a contested new constitution, the country’s electoral body said Friday, in a blow to President Alpha Conde’s opponents who...

Zimbabwe to impose 21-day lockdown from Monday to combat coronavirus

Zimbabwe will impose a nationwide lockdown for 21 days from Monday to help curb the spread of the coronavirus, and security forces may be...

10-minute coronavirus test in production in Senegal may be on its way – for $1

Researchers this week began validation trials on a Covid-19 diagnostic test that can be done at home and produce results in as little as...

Police shoot 2 men in Uganda for violating movement ban

Ugandan police said on Friday that two men were in hospital after being shot for violating restrictions on transport in a bid to curb...

Coronavirus cases in S/Africa now 1,170 as bus taking tourists to testing facility breaks down

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in South Africa has gone up to 1, 170, this is even as the nationwide shutdown to try...

Couple arrested on bus in Tanzania for claiming coronavirus a hoax

Police in Tanzania's commercial capital Dar es Salaam are holding a couple for allegedly spreading false information that coronavirus is a hoax from government.Dar...

British PM Boris Johnson tests positive for Coronavirus

British PM Boris Johnson announced on Friday that he is self-isolating after testing positive for COVID-19 and would be coordinating affairs via video conferencing."Over...

More Articles Like This

- Advertisement -
%d bloggers like this: