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Damaged Russian Pipeline Causes Energy Crisis in Georgia

  • VOA News

Two explosions damaged a natural-gas pipeline in southern Russia Sunday and interrupted supplies to two of Russia's neighbors. With most of the region frozen by unusually severe winter weather, the Republic of Georgia says it is facing an energy crisis.

Pipeline repairs are expected to take up to three days, but authorities in Georgia report their country's reserves will be exhausted by Monday. Emergency deliveries from Azerbaijan could ease the crisis, but officials in Tbilisi say such arrangements would take 72 hours.

Gas supplies to Armenia also were cut by today's explosions -- two blasts that hit two separate pipelines during the night, less than 30 minutes apart, in - North Ossetia in the Caucasus region of southern Russia.

Russian authorities say they have not determined the cause of the explosions, but that sabotage has not been ruled out.

Information for this report is provided by AP and REUTERS.

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