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News / Nation & World

Iran accuses Israel of sabotage

Attack caused blasts on pipeline, official says

By Associated Press
Published: February 21, 2024, 4:29pm
2 Photos
Two men look at flames after a natural gas pipeline explodes outside the city of Boroujen in the western Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari province, Iran, in early Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2024. Explosions struck a natural gas pipeline in Iran early Wednesday, with an official blaming the blasts on a &ldquo;sabotage and terrorist action&rdquo; in the country as tensions remain high in the Middle East amid Israel&rsquo;s war on Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
Two men look at flames after a natural gas pipeline explodes outside the city of Boroujen in the western Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari province, Iran, in early Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2024. Explosions struck a natural gas pipeline in Iran early Wednesday, with an official blaming the blasts on a “sabotage and terrorist action” in the country as tensions remain high in the Middle East amid Israel’s war on Hamas in the Gaza Strip. (Reza Kamali Dehkordi/Fars News Agency via AP) Photo Gallery

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — An Israeli sabotage attack on an Iranian natural gas pipeline last week caused multiple explosions on the line, Iran’s oil minister alleged Wednesday, further raising tensions between the regional archenemies against the backdrop of Israel’s war on Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

The accusations by Iran’s Oil Minister Javad Owji come as Israel has been blamed for a series of attacks targeting Tehran’s nuclear program.

The “explosion of the gas pipeline was an Israeli plot,” Owji said, according to Iran’s state-run IRNA news agency. “The enemy intended to disturb gas service in the provinces and put people’s gas distribution at risk.”

“The evil action and plot by the enemy was properly managed,” Owji added, without providing any evidence to support his claims.

Israel has not acknowledged carrying out the attack, though it rarely claims its espionage missions abroad.

The Feb. 14 blasts hit a natural gas pipeline running from Iran’s western Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari province up north to cities on the Caspian Sea. The roughly 790-mile-long pipeline begins in Asaluyeh, a hub for Iran’s offshore South Pars gas field.

Israel has carried out attacks in Iran that have predominantly targeted its nuclear program. Last week, the head of the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog warned that Iran is “not entirely transparent” regarding its atomic program, particularly after an official who once led Tehran’s program announced the Islamic Republic has all the pieces for a weapon “in our hands.”

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