Photo: Transandino pipeline
A new bomb attack destroyed a stretch of the Transandino pipeline in a rural area of the southwestern province of Nariño, authorities said Saturday.
Oscar Hurtado - mayor of the town of Puerres, the nearest urban center - said the sabotage occurred at some 7 kilometers (4 miles) from the downtown district between the rural areas known as Loma Redonda and La Esperanza.
The 306-kilometer (190-mile) pipeline, operated by state oil firm Ecopetrol, transports oil from Lago Agrio in Ecuador to Colombia’s Pacific Ocean port of Tumaco.
Fire department officials in Ipiales, a town near Puerres, said the attack caused no environmental damage to water sources and that the fire was extinguished.
Factions of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, that operate in the area have recently focused on blowing up electric power infrastructures in the southwestern provinces of Nariño, Cauca and Valle del Cauca.
The bomb attack comes as part of the FARC’s escalating violence that began more than two weeks ago when the rebels destroyed electric towers and immediately knocked out power in several towns along Nariño’s Pacific coast.
One of the cities most affected had been Tumaco, the second largest Colombian port on the Pacific, with some 170,000 inhabitants, but authorities said Saturday that electricity had been restored after being out for more than two weeks.