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Explosion hits Iran-Turkey gas pipeline: Report

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
The photo shared on social media shows an explosion from a suspected sabotage attack on the Iran-Turkey natural gas pipeline in the eastern Turkish province of Ağrı on July 27, 2015.

An explosion has hit the Iran-Turkey natural gas pipeline in the eastern Turkish province of Ağrı, the Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Ministry reports. 

The suspected sabotage attack took place in the  Doğubeyazıt district, some 15 kilometers from the border with Iran, the Anadolu news agency quoted Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız as saying in a statement late on Monday.

No one has immediately claimed responsibility for the blast but some local media say the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) is behind the attack.  

"The explosion caused a fire breakout; however, in a short time we managed to extinguish it. After repairing it, the gas flow will resume," Yıldız said.

He added that necessary measures would be taken to meet the area’s natural gas demand until the pipeline is repaired.

Iran is Turkey’s second-biggest gas supplier after Russia.

Earlier in the day, a paramilitary police commander was shot dead in a mainly Kurdish region of Mus province in eastern Turkey.

"The commander was subjected to an armed attack around 2100 local time (1800 GMT)," a Turkish hospital source said, adding that the policeman succumbed to his injuries after being rushed to hospital and that some members of his immediate family also sustained injuries in the attack.

No one has claimed responsibility for the killing but Ankara usually blames the PKK for such incidents in the region.

Turkey launched a military campaign against PKK positions in Syria last week, following an ISIL attack in the southwestern Turkish town of Suruç, which claimed the lives of at least 32 people, on July 20.  

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