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Explosion Knocks Out Fuel Pipeline

February 21, 1991

CORDOBA, Spain (AP) _ An explosive device blew up today on a pipeline carrying fuel to U.S. air bases in Spain, knocking it out of service, officials said.

A spokeswoman for Campsa, the Spanish operators of the pipeline, confirmed an explosion occurred. The woman, who spoke on condition of anonymity, reported the 480-mile-long pipeline would be out of service for about 24 hours. The company reported the pipeline carries gasoline, diesel fuel and kerosene.

Central government delegate Alfonso Garrido said the explosion occurred at 7:45 a.m. near a railroad siding outside Cordoba. He said the extent of the damage had not been determined.

The pipeline runs from the Atlantic port of Rota, where the United States maintains a naval station, to Madrid and the Torrejon air base to Zaragoza in northeast Spain, site of another joint U.S.-Spanish air base. The pipeline was built by the U.S. government in the late 1950s.

In 1984, the Basque separatist group ETA attacked the pipeline, putting it out of commission for more than 24 hours.

Since Iraq invaded Kuwait Aug. 2, the bases at Torrejon and Zaragoza have served as transit points for U.S. military equipment and troops en route to Saudi Arabia.

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