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Yemen: Oil pipeline attacked, both warring parties accuse each other

A Yemeni oil worker looks out at the Aden oil refinery after it was re-actived on September 5, 2016, following a year of closure due to the on going conflict [SALEH AL-OBEIDI/AFP/Getty Images]
A Yemeni oil worker looks out at the Aden oil refinery after it was re-actived on September 5, 2016, following a year of closure due to the on going conflict [SALEH AL-OBEIDI/AFP/Getty Images]

Warring factions in Yemen accused each other on Sunday of attacking an oil pipeline pumping station in the central province of Marib, where clashes have raged for weeks and displaced tens of thousands of civilians, reports Reuters.

The oil ministry of the Saudi-backed government in Yemen said on Sunday the Iran-aligned Houthi group had targeted the station, according to the Saudi state news agency SPA.

Hussein al-Ezzi, an official in the Houthi-controlled government based in the capital Sanaa since 2014, said Saudi-led coalition forces had attacked the Kofel pumping station in what he described as a dangerous escalation.

Both sides gave no details of the reported attack.

The pipeline is operated by the Yemeni government-owned Safer oil company but no oil has been pumped through it for years.

Read: Yemen’s Houthi air defences intercept Saudi warplanes over Jawf

Yemen’s oil output has collapsed since 2015 when a Saudi-led military coalition intervened in the war to try to restore the government of Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi to power after it was ousted by Houthi forces in Sanaa.

The United Nations and Western powers hope the threat posed by the global coronavirus pandemic will push Yemen’s combatants into fresh talks to end a largely stalemated war that has left millions vulnerable to disease and starvation.

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