US blames Iran for attacks on Saudi oil facilities

Published: 15 Sep 2019   

Online Desk

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has blamed Iran for Saturday's drone attacks on Saudi oil facilities.

He dismissed a claim by Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels that they had attacked the two facilities, run by state-owned company Aramco.

Iran's foreign minister accused Mr Pompeo of "deceit".

Saudi Arabia's energy minister said the strikes had reduced crude oil production by 5.7 million barrels a day - about half the kingdom's output.

Correspondents say they could have a significant impact on world oil prices, BBC reports.

The main Saudi stock exchange plummeted 3% on opening on Sunday, before recovering.

Saturday's drone attacks hit Abqaiq, site of Aramco's largest oil processing plant, and the Khurais oilfield.

The Saudis lead a Western-backed military coalition supporting Yemen's government, in opposition to the Houthi rebel movement.

The attacks also come against a backdrop of continuing tension between the US and Iran, following US President Donald Trump's abandonment of a deal limiting Iran's nuclear activities and reinstatement of sanctions.

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