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Gazprom bids to hike supply after Turkey blast

Russian state player Gazprom has said it will aim to boost gas supplies to Turkey by 60% after an explosion on a gas pipeline halted flows between Iran and Turkey.

Iran's state-owned National Iranian Gas Company meanwhile confirmed it was halting supply due to an incident on the Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum pipeline, Dow Jones reported.

The explosion has been blamed on the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which has previously claimed dozens of similar attacks.

Turkish energy officials earlier told Reuters and Agence France Presse the blast occurred in the area of Dogubayazit, Agri province near the Iranian border.

They said damage assessment work had begun and it was not immediately clear when the gas flow will resume or what caused the blast, which occurred around 0100 GMT.

Gazprom said it would try to meet a demand from Turkey’s state pipeline company Botas for an extra 18 million cubic metres per day of supply if "technically possible".

Last week, BP Azerbaijan said it was redirecting flow around the same pipeline amid reports of a separate attack.

Eastern Turkey is home to a Kurdish insurgency that has seen frequent attacks on energy infrastructure.

Flows have also been halted several times on the Kirkuk-Ceyhan pipeline carrying crude oil from Iraq to Turkey in recent months due to suspected sabotage blamed on the PKK.

The PKK's 28-year-old armed campaign against the Turkish state is thought to have claimed more than 40,000 lives.