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Saudi says oil attacks from north, sponsored by Iran

Saudi defence ministry spokesman Turki bin Saleh al-Malki shows off pictures as he alleges that strikes on the country’s oil infrastructure came from the north and were ‘unquestionably’ sponsored by Iran

Saudi Arabia said Wednesday that strikes on its oil infrastructure came from the “north” and were “unquestionably” sponsored by Iran, but that the kingdom was still investigating where exactly they were launched from.

“The attack was launched from the north and unquestionably sponsored by Iran,” defence ministry spokesman Turki al-Maliki told a press conference. “We are working to know the exact launch point.”

However, he would not be drawn on whether Saudi Arabia believed Iran would ultimately be found to be the culprit, only saying they were confident they would find where the weapons were fired from.

Maliki displayed pieces of what he said were cruise missiles and drones used in the strike, recovered from the site of Saturday’s attack in the country’s east.

He said a combination of 18 drones and seven cruise missiles fired at the two key oil installations from a direction that ruled out its southern neighbour Yemen as a source.

He reiterated Riyadh’s position that the Iran-backed Huthi rebels in neighbouring Yemen, where a Saudi-led coalition is mired in a five-year conflict, were not responsible for the assault despite claiming it.

“Despite Iran’s efforts to make it appear so” they did not originate from Yemen, he said, adding the strike was beyond the capabilities of the militia — who have however mounted dozens of smaller attacks on Saudi territory.

In addition, “the targeting direction indicates it came from the north,” he said.

AFP

Sep 18, 2019

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