Saudi Arabia has announced it will
respond with “necessary measures” to attacks on two oil facilities as
it reiterated the accusation that Iran was behind them.
Minister of State for Foreign
Affairs Adel al-Jubeir said the weapons used were Iranian and vowed to release
the full findings of the investigation.
However, Iran denies involvement in
Earlier, a senior Iranian military
official said Iran was ready to destroy any aggressor after the US announced it
was sending troops to Saudi Arabia.
Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in
Yemen have said they were responsible for the drone and missile strikes on September
14 that affected the global oil supply.
Tensions between the US and Iran
have escalated since President Donald Trump abandoned a deal limiting Iran’s
nuclear activities last year and reinstated sanctions.
Speaking to reporters in Riyadh,
Adel al-Jubeir said Saudi Arabia was in consultation with its allies and would
take necessary and suitable measures after its investigation was complete,
without giving details of possible actions.
The Saudi minister repeated that the
strikes targeting the Abqaiq oil facility and the Khurais oil field had come
from the north and not from Yemen but did not give a specific location, and
urged the international community to take a stand.
He said: “The kingdom calls upon the international community to assume its
responsibility in condemning those that stand behind this act, and to take a
firm and clear position against this reckless behavior that threatens the
The Saudi defense ministry showed
off on September 18 what it said were the remains of drones and cruise missiles
proving Iranian involvement.
The US has also accused Iran of being behind the attacks, and unnamed senior
officials have told US media that the evidence suggests the strikes originated
in the south of Iran.
On September 20, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said the US would send a
yet-to-be-decided number of troops to Saudi Arabia to boost the country’s air
and missile defenses.
President Donald Trump then announced new sanctions against Iran, focusing on the country’s central bank and its sovereign wealth fund, while signaling that he wanted to avoid military conflict.
Former Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi has fled the capital, Sanaa, weeks after he was put under house arrest by Houthi rebels who forced him to resign.
Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi is thought to have reached the main southern city of Aden.
It comes a day after rival parties agreed on the formation of a transitional council to govern the country.
Yemen has been in crisis since the takeover by the Houthis, a Shia group.
UN mediator Jamal Benomar announced the preliminary accord between feuding factions on Thursday and hailed it as “an important step”.
Abd,Rabbuh Mansur Hadi’s supporters in Aden have so far refused to recognize what they denounce as a political coup.
Last week, the governors of the provinces of Aden, Lahij and Mahra demanded the reinstatement of Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and reaffirmed their support for Yemen becoming a federation of six regions.
Houthi rebels seized the capital Sanaa in September, before capturing the presidential palace and placing Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi under house arrest. He then quit his presidential post, saying he could not continue under such pressure.
The Houthis dissolved parliament and installed a five-member “presidential council” on February 6.
This sparked security concerns that saw several Arab and Western states close their embassies and remove diplomats.
Since overrunning Sanaa, the Houthis have expanded their control to coastal areas and regions south of the capital.
Their takeover was denounced as a coup by rival political factions and prompted mass protests, mainly from the country’s Sunni majority.
The Houthis have also faced fierce resistance from Sunni tribes and al-Qaeda militants.
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