Iran strongly denies involvement in Saudi oil attacks
The United States issued satellite images and cited intelligence to back its claim that Iran was behind attacks on major Saudi oil facilities. The attack occurred on Saturday's air attacks, which were claimed by Iran-aligned Houthi rebels in Yemen. Meanwhile, unnamed US officials speaking to US and international media say the direction and extent of the attacks cast doubt on Houthi involvement, as reported by BBC news.
The incident is rippling effect on the markets and has cut global oil supplies by 5% and prices have soared.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blamed Iran at the weekend, without providing any evidence, prompting Tehran to accuse Washington of deceit.
Also tweeting on Sunday, President Donald Trump stopped short of directly accusing Iran, but suggested possible military action once the perpetrator was known.
As one official reported, there were 19 points of impact on the targets and the attacks had come from a west-north-west direction - not Houthi-controlled territory in Yemen, which lies to the south-west of the Saudi oil facilities.
A close-up image of damaged tanks at the Abqaiq processing plant appeared to show impact points on the western side and Iraq also has denied the attacks were launched from its territory.
ABC quoted a senior US official as saying that Mr Trump was fully aware that Iran was responsible. on its own part, China has urged restraint.
In the UK, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said it was not yet clear who was responsible for what he described as a "wanton violation of international law".
Arabnews.com published a report in which Iraq on Sunday strongly denied claims that its territory had been used to launch a wave of drone strikes on two Saudi oil facilities.
In a statement from Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi’s media office, the government vowed to take “firm” action against any parties that attempted “to violate the constitution,” and appealed for an end to the attacks which posed a major threat to regional and global security. And Iraqi commanders of pro-Iran armed factions warned they could now be targeted themselves by the US.
Drones hit Saudi Aramco refineries at Abqaiq and Khurais, in the Eastern Province, on Saturday setting them on fire and sparking international outrage.
Written by Jude Chukwuemeka