Yemeni energy company denies attack report

Aug. 13, 2013 at 8:42 AM
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SANAA, Yemen, Aug. 13 (UPI) -- A natural gas company operating in Yemen said it denied there was a deadly al-Qaida attack on an export terminal last weekend.

Yemen LNG said there was no validity to reports of an attack by al-Qaida on the Balhaf liquefied natural gas export terminal, the country's only such facility.

Cable news broadcaster CNN reported Yemeni soldiers were killed in a Sunday attack on the terminal. Citing unnamed security officials, the broadcaster, and others, reported the attack was "quick and sudden."

CNN attributed the attack to tribesman, saying it was correcting earlier reports of al-Qaida involvement.

"Yemen LNG denies that such incident took place at its Balhaf facility," the company said in a statement Monday. "However, Yemen LNG was informed by police authorities that there was an incident involving the army and local tribesmen that took place around 35 miles from Balhaf."

The company stressed its frustration with the "inaccurate reporting."

The U.S. Embassy in Sanaa announced Saturday it was closed because of a high security threat. The State Department warned last week there were suggestions U.S. national interests in the region may be targeted by al-Qaida.

The Yemeni government said Aug. 5 it tightened security around energy infrastructure amid concerns about the threat level.

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