JEDDAH / Agencies
Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest crude exporter, has said that attacks on two of its tankers and a major pipeline targeted the security of global oil supplies.
The Saudi cabinet affirmed yesterday evening that such acts of terrorism and sabotage do not only target the kingdom but also the global economy.
Yesterday, Drone attacks shut down one of the kingdom’s main oil pipelines. It further increased Gulf tensions after the mysterious sabotage of four ships, two of them Saudi tankers, recently.
The drone strikes hit two pumping stations on the kingdom’s east-west pipeline, which can carry five million barrels of crude per day and provides a strategic alternative route for Saudi exports.
Yemen’s Huthi rebels claimed responsibility for the strikes and said they were a response to “crimes” committed by Saudi Arabia and its allies during more than four years of war in support of the government.
Meanwhile Saudi Aramco resumed pumping oil Wednesday through a pipeline hit by a drone attacks the day before.
Two pumping stations on Saudi Arabia’s East-West pipeline were hit in the early morning raid, which was initially claimed by Houthi militants in Yemen.
Saudi Aramco said oil was again pumping through the pipeline, which joins the Arabia Gulf and Red Sea coast lines, Al Arabiya reported.
On Wednesday, there was further international condemnation of what Saudi Arabia’s energy minister, Khalid Al-Falih, described as “an act of terrorism and sabotage.”
Meanwhile, British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said that the attack “was not just wrong but undermines the trust needed to resolve the conflict,” referring to the situation in Yemen.
France said the attack was an unacceptable act that threatened regional security.
“France strongly condemns the attacks carried out by drones against Saudi oil installations, claimed by the Houthis,” a foreign ministry spokeswoman said.
“France calls on all parties to refrain from any escalation likely to jeopardise the political process to bring an end to the Yemeni conflict,” she added.