On Tuesday, June 25, state-run Ecopetrol reported that the Caño Limón-Coveñas oil pipeline had been attacked by unidentified assailants near Saravena municipality (Arauca department). The explosion reportedly caused a minor oil spill. Military personnel were deployed to the site to assist Ecopetrol with containment and clean-up efforts.
Though no group claimed responsibility or was immediately blamed for the incidents, the National Liberation Army (ELN) frequently carries out attacks on oil pipelines in Colombia. Similar attacks on oil pipelines are possible in Colombia over the coming weeks.
According to officials, the Caño Limón-Coveñas pipeline has been attacked 19 times in 2019. At least 89 attacks against pipelines were reported in Colombia in 2018. The Caño Limón-Coveñas is Colombia's most important pipeline, with a daily transportation capacity of 210,000 barrels.
Individuals in Colombia are advised to monitor developments to the situation and report suspicious objects and behavior to police. Due to the presence of several armed groups - including organized crime groups, drug cartels, right-wing militias, and local gangs, in addition to the ELN - some Western governments advise against travel to various parts of the country, including the Venezuelan border region.
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