Saudi Arabia said that two of its oil pumping stations were attacked by armed drones on Tuesday, Riyadh called the act by Houthi Rebels of Yemen as “cowardly”, the incident happened 2 days after Saudi oil tankers were sabotaged off the coast of the UAE.
The drone strikes damaged a small part on one of the oil pumping stations that supplied a pipeline that runs from its oil-rich eastern provinces to the Yanbu port in the Red Sea.
The information was released by Khalid al-Falih, the Energy Minister of Saudi Arabia.
Minister al-Falih said, “These attacks prove again that it is important for us to face terrorist entities, including the Houthi militias in Yemen that are backed by Iran.”
A fire also broke out in the oil stations, but it was controlled later on. Aramco, the state-run oil giant has stopped pumping oil through the pipeline that was targeted by the drone attacks.
Minister al-Falih said that the drone attack was “cowardly”.
The minister also assured that the export and production of oil in the country will not be stopped.
The oil prices went up immediately after the attacks were done on the oil pumping stations. The Brent trading went up by 1.2 percent.
Yahya Saree, the Houthi Military spokesman, said that 7 armed drones carried out the attacks on the oil pumping stations.
Saree said, “It was a successful operation. We found assistance from people living in Saudi Arabia, and we had excellent intelligence.”
The drone attacks that were carried out by the Houthis show that the group is capable of getting inside the territory of Saudi without sending in armed humans.
In an interview with Al Jazeera, Andreas Krieg, from the King’s College of London, said, “The Houthi capability has increased massively in recent years, some of it homegrown but [the attack] definitely suggests that the Iranians have helped out.”
He added, “They’ve never been able to deeply penetrate Saudi Arabia… It looks like they are targeting the oil infrastructure.”