Massed drone strikes on Saudi oil facilities cause Kingdom to shut down 50% of production

Massed drone strikes on Saudi oil facilities cause Kingdom to shut down 50% of production
Saudi oil processing facility at Abqaiq, after 14 Sep 2019 drone strike. Guardian video (social media) via YouTube

[Ed. – The shutdown may not last that long, but this is unquestionably an escalation by Iran.  The Houthis in Yemen claim responsibility; however, the processing compounds that were struck are in northeast Saudi Arabia, more than 600 miles from the nearest Houthi.  Strikes from Iraq are a better bet.  More on this to come.]

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blamed Iran for coordinated drone strikes on the heart of Saudi Arabia’s oil industry, saying they marked an unprecedented attack on the world’s energy supply.

The strikes shut down half of the kingdom’s crude production on Saturday, potentially roiling petroleum prices and demonstrating the power of Iran’s proxies.

Iran-allied Houthi rebels in neighboring Yemen claimed credit for the attack, saying they sent 10 drones to strike at important facilities in Saudi Arabia’s oil-rich Eastern Province. But Mr. Pompeo said there was no evidence the strikes had come from Yemen.

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In a tweet, he said the U.S. will work with allies “to ensure that energy markets remain well supplied and Iran is held accountable for its aggression.” He added that the strikes showed Iran wasn’t serious about diplomacy.

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