Oil Facilities Attacked by Houthi’s Booby-Trapped Drones: Saudi Arabia

  • Our Bureau
  • 03:56 PM, March 26, 2022
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Oil Facilities Attacked by Houthi’s Booby-Trapped Drones: Saudi Arabia
Fire at Aramco facility in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia @Via Twitter

Saudi Arabia has accused Yemeni Houthi militia of launching multiple airstrikes on key facilities including those dealing with oil including a depot in Jeddah and other facilities in Riyadh, with booby-trapped drones.

A huge plume of black smoke was seen rising from the plant in Jeddah, as the city prepared to host a Formula One race on Sunday. On Friday, Houthi military spokesperson Yahya Sarea tweeted the attacks targeted “Aramco facilities in Jeddah and vital facilities in the capital of the Saudi enemy, Riyadh.” He added that facilities of oil giant Aramco were also attacked in Jizan, Najran, Ras Tanura and Rabigh with “a large number of drones.”

The North Jeddah Bulk Plant stores diesel, petrol and jet fuel for use in the city. It accounts for more than a quarter of all of Saudi Arabia’s supplies and also supplies fuel crucial to running a regional desalination plant.

As per reports, the Houthis have twice targeted the North Jeddah plant with cruise missiles: One attack came in November 2020 while the last one came on Sunday. At the time of the 2020 attack, the tank, which has a capacity of 500,000 barrels, held diesel fuel.

In a statement today, Secretary-General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit said Houthi militia launched booby-trapped drones towards the southern region of the Kingdom.

Meanwhile, an official spokesperson at the Ministry of Energy said that the petroleum products distribution station in North Jeddah was attacked at 5:25 PM on Friday. Another airborne attack was also made against Almukhtarah station in Jizan at 5:00 PM.

The spokesperson added that the Kingdom “will not be responsible for any shortage in oil supplies to the international markets.” The official said the international community “should be aware of the danger of Iran’s continuous provision of ballistic missiles and advanced drones (to Houthis), which target the Kingdom’s oil, gas and refining facilities.”

The Saudi-led coalition in Yemen destroyed nine booby-trapped drones aimed at energy sites and civilian sites on March 25, state television Al Arabiya reported.

There has been a series of attacks reported over recent days by Yemen's Houthi militants against Saudi targets. On March 23, Saudi forces intercepted an explosives laden boat in the Red Sea, through which around 7 million b/d of crude oil transits, while late March 22 Saudi forces intercepted a ballistic missile that was fired towards the southern city of Jizan.

On March 20, the Houthis targeted Aramco's Yanbu Aramco Sinopec Refining Co. (Yasref) refinery, resulting in temporary reduction of its output. Other aerial attacks targeted a power station in the country’s southwest, a desalination facility in Al-Shaqeeq on the Red Sea coast, an Aramco terminal in the southern border town of Jizan and a gas station in the southern city of Khamis Mushait, the coalition said.

A day earlier, Saudi forces foiled an alleged Houthi attempt to target energy infrastructure in Yanbu, Khamis Mushait and Dhahran al-Janoub using a ballistic missile and several armed drones.

In what appears to be a retaliatory attack, the coalition says it launched air strikes in Sanaa and Hodeidah.

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