Eight people dead in Yemeni pipeline shooting
Maintenance crew attacked by armed tribesmen.
Eight people have died during an attack on a maintenance crew repairing an oil pipeline in Yemen. The crew were working to repair the pipeline which was blown up last month, when they came under attack from armed tribesmen.
Two tribesmen were killed, along with six soldiers who were guarding the crew. Repair work has now been halted, with no oil able to pass from the Masila oilfields to the al-Dabbah coastal export facility.
The pipeline has a capacity of 120,000 barrels per day and provides crucial income to the destitute nation.
It is thought that the attack was carried out by local tribesman in order to increase pressure on the national government.
Yemeni tribes have also attacked national energy facilities in recent months and overran an oil ministry building in Hadramout.
Tensions between the government and local tribesmen are particularly fraught at the moment, due to the shooting of an important tribal chief at an army checkpoint in December.
No one has claimed responsibility for this latest attack, but tribesmen in the area have said that they will not allow government forces to repair the pipeline until the soldiers who killed the chief are handed over to them.
Yemen’s oil income is thought to make up around 70% of its total revenue.