AMMAN: An explosion hit a major oil pipeline feeding a refinery in the Syrian city of Homs on Wednesday, near a large Sunni Muslim district under bombardment by government forces, residents said.
A large plume of smoke was still rising from the pipeline, which runs near farmland at the edge of Baba Amro district, some two hours after the blast, they said.
It was not clear what caused the explosion. The pipeline, which runs from the Rumeilan fields in the eastern Syrian Desert to the Homs refinery, one of two in the country, has been hit several times before during the 11-month uprising against President Bashar alAssad.
Footage from an activist’s camera feeding live footage from Homs via the internet showed a dense plume of smoke rising behind houses in Baba Amro.
The authorities have accused “terrorist saboteurs” of hitting the pipeline while opposition activists said the military, which began firing shells, mortar rounds and rockets into Baba Amro on February 3, has been hitting it by mistake.