Israel expects gas to flow from east Mediterranean to Europe

Israel's energy minister says a potential undersea pipeline carrying natural gas from deposits in the eastern Mediterranean to Europe is "very realistic" and could help secure the continent's energy future.

Yuval Steinitz told The Associated Press Tuesday that a study on the project shows that the pipeline is feasible, even though it presents technical challenges due to the sea depths involved.

He said the estimated 6.2 billion euro (7.36 billion) pipeline could take 6-7 years to build and the countries involved in the project "are serious about it: it will happen."

Steinitz was speaking ahead of Tuesday's signing of an agreement between Cyprus, Israel, Greece and Italy to examine the possibility of building the pipeline.

The Israeli official said an undersea pipeline would be less vulnerable to sabotage.