Armed men attack Gas pipeline in Egypt

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Egypt-Israel gas pipeline, archive (Photo: AFP)

Armed men attacked a gas pipeline in the north of Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula late on Sunday, security sources and witnesses said, but imports of gas through North Sinai from Israel were unaffected.

Egyptian security forces have been battling an Islamist insurgency that is concentrated in North Sinai and escalated after 2013. Small scale attacks are common.

On Sunday, a group of gunmen detonated explosives on the pipeline west of el-Arish, causing a fire but no casualties, security sources, and witnesses said.

The pipeline carries gas to homes and factories in el-Arish and central Sinai and has been attacked several times before, the sources said.

Egypt began importing gas from Israel last month through a pipeline owned by the East Mediterranean Gas Company (EMG), which includes a subsea connection between el-Arish in Sinai and Ashkelon in Israel.

The gas is imported from Israel’s Leviathan field. Partners developing the field said in a statement that there had been no damage to the EMG pipeline.

“The flow of gas from Leviathan to Egypt is continuing as normal,” the statement said.

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