Iran Says Refinery Engulfed in Fire to Be Back Online Thursday

An oil refinery in Iran’s capital that was engulfed in a huge fire will be back online by Thursday, Iran’s official Shana news service reported, quoting Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh.

The Tehran Oil Refinery, in the south of the city, suspended all operations on Wednesday after a leak at a liquid gas pipeline caused the blaze that sent massive plumes of black smoke across the city, state TV reported earlier, quoting the director-general of crisis management for Tehran province, Mansour Darajati.

There were no reports of deaths or injuries, and firefighters had the fire -- which burned through at least 20,000 barrels of diesel by late Wednesday evening -- under control, the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency reported.

Zanganeh said production at the refinery, which has a daily refining capacity of 220,000 barrels of oil, hadn’t been affected and there were no fuel shortages as a result of the damage.

The incident came on the same day that a fire caused an Iranian navy training ship to sink in the Gulf of Oman and less than two weeks after an explosion at another refinery in Iran’s southwestern oil-producing region of Abadan.

Earlier, the Tehran Oil Refining Co., which runs the refinery and is a subsidiary of the state-run National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Co., ruled out sabotage as a cause, the semi-official Iranian Students’ News Agency reported.

The refinery is one of several in Iran that were earmarked for modernization and development using foreign investment until former U.S. President Donald Trump exited the 2015 nuclear deal three years ago and reimposed sanctions on the Islamic Republic.

Video released by Shana showed the site was still submerged in huge flames and massive smoke plumes by nightfall in Tehran, when Zanganeh went to inspect the blaze.

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