Middle East

New attack on Egypt gas pipeline to Israel and Jordan

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Media captionThe blast was the latest in a series of attacks on pipelines in Sinai exporting gas to Jordan and Israel

A section of pipeline carrying gas from Egypt to Israel and Jordan has been blown up in northern Egypt, the latest in a series of attacks.

Three men opened fire at a pumping station near the town of el-Arish, a witness told Reuters news agency.

There were reports of flames shooting 15 metres (45 feet) into the air.

There have been half-a-dozen attacks this year, apparently by groups opposed to the sale of Egyptian gas to Israel.

There have been allegations that under former President Hosni Mubarak, gas prices for the 20-year deal struck in 2008 were set artificially low.,

Jordan depends on Egyptian gas to generate 80% of its electricity while Israel gets 40% of its natural gas from the country. Syria also imports gas from Egypt.

After a similar attack in February, gas exports were halted for a month.

El-Arish is located 50km (30 miles) from the border with Israel.

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