Saudi energy minister: Pipeline booster stations hit by explosive-laden drones
Two oil-pumping stations for the East-West pipeline had been hit by explosive-laden drones, Saudi Arabia's Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources Khalid al-Falih said on Tuesday, calling the attack "an act of terrorism" that targeted global oil supplies.
Al-Falih said that Saudi oil output and exports for crude and refined products were continuing without disruption. He added that a fire broke out in one of the stations as a result of the attack, but was quickly contained.
"Saudi Aramco took precautionary measures and temporarily stopped operation of the pipeline, as it is evaluating the situation and working on restoring the operations of the affected pump station and the pipeline," al-Falih said in a statement cited by state news agency SPA.
Yemen’s Houthi-run Masirah TV had cited a military official saying seven drones staged attacks on vital Saudi installations.
Saudi Aramco confirmed that there were no injuries or casualties following the attacks.
The 1,200-kilometre (750-mile) pipeline carries crude from Saudi Arabia's main eastern oil fields to the Red Sea port city of Yanbu in the west. They were located in Saudi Arabia’s town of Al al-Duwadimi and the city of Afif.
Al-Falih added that the drone attack was done with the aim of disrupting world oil supplies.
The energy minister said that Saudi oil production and exports will still continue uninterrupted, adding that the attack “proves the importance of confronting all terrorist organizations.”
Reuters reported that an Aramco official said Saudi Arabia is determined to increase oil supplies to Europe by three million barrels.
Following the attacks, oil prices made limited gains, not exceeding 1.5 percent following Al-Falih’s statements about the continuity of oil supplies.
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