Last updated: 13 August, 2011

Kurdish rebels claim attack on gas pipeline

Kurdish rebels on Saturday claimed responsibility for an attack on a pipeline in eastern Turkey that has cut off Iranian gas shipments to Turkey.

The pro-Kurdish Firat news agency carried a statement from the armed wing of of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) saying its guerrillas sabotaged the pipeline at around 2000 GMT on Thursday.

An energy ministry official said Friday that repairs on the pipeline in Agri province had started and would last about a week.

Turkey receives between 15 and 18 billion cubic metres of gas a day via the pipeline which links the western Iranian city of Tabriz with the Turkish capital.

The PKK, listed as a terrorist group by Ankara and much of the international community, took up arms in the Kurdish-majority southeast in 1984, sparking a conflict that has claimed about 45,000 lives.