DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- The United Arab Emirates on Sunday inaugurated a much-anticipated overland oil pipeline that bypasses the Strait of Hormuz, giving the OPEC member insurance against Iranian threats to block the strategic waterway.
The 236-mile Abu Dhabi Crude Oil Pipeline snakes across western desert dunes and over the craggy Hajar mountains to Fujairah on the emirates' Indian Ocean coast, south of the strait.
The narrow strait is patrolled by Iranian warships as well as by the U.S. Navy and allies. It is the export route for 17 million barrels of oil a day, a fifth of the world's supply.
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