Saudi Arabia shuts down key pipeline after alleged drone attacks

WTI and Brent Crude Oil

WTI and Brent Crude Oil

Tehran has responded by threatening to close the Strait of Hormuz, a main artery for global oil shipments that links the Persian Gulf to the Gulf of Oman.

Saudi Arabia says an oil pipeline that runs across the country has been attacked by armed drones.

Mohammed Al-Bukhaiti, a member of the Houthis' Political Bureau, said in statements to Al Jazeera TV channel that these attacks come as part of "the expansion of attacks against Saudi and UAE targets", to push both countries to review their policies in the region, as he put it. It's nearly as if someone else was pulling the strings.

Riyadh separately announced that two of its oil tankers, apparently among the four, were "sabotaged" off the coast of Fujairah.

US officials have so far given no details on exactly what happened to the ships and have no proof of who was responsible.

In addition to having allies Hezbollah in Lebanon and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip, Iran also has a number of explosive missiles aimed at Israel making the country a unsafe threat.

Meanwhile, "Iran are trying to send strong, but also conflicting messages about what their objectives are", Vakil said, but she said talk of parallels with the situation leading up to the 2003 Iraq War are overplayed. Iran called the Fujairah incident regrettable, and then, with a straight face, pointed the finger of blame at its arch-foe Israel. Yet an initial assessment by the U.S. found that Iran was probably behind the attack. On the downside, the immediate support emerges at $60.46 (200-day SMA) followed by $59.98 (low May 6) and finally $59.63 (50% Fibo of the October-December drop).

The incident comes after months of increasing diplomatic and economic pressure on Iran, which Washington accuses of threatening American interests and allies in the region, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

Although the kingdom stopped short of blaming Iran for the incident, Saudi officials stressed it was the responsibility of the worldwide community to hold accountable those behind the attack.

RIYADH/DUBAI - The U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia said Washington should take what he called "reasonable responses short of war" after it had determined who was behind attacks on oil tankers off the coast of the United Arab Emirates.

"God willing we will pass this hard period with glory and our heads held high, and defeat the enemy", Rouhani said at a late night meeting with clerics.

A third of the world's liquefied natural gas and nearly 20 per cent of total global oil production flows through the Strait of Hormuz for export from Persian Gulf countries.

Yet these are not salvos confined purely to the region's messy proxy wars.

The crude oil price outlook has worsened as the United States and China ramp up tariffs on each other's goods in a trade war that could hit worldwide economic growth.

More is at stake aside from unhealthy movements on the energy markets, however.

Karen Young, a resident scholar at the Washington-based American Enterprise Institute think tank, said the incidents were "clearly. more than a one off attack, but something more coordinated".

Oil prices rose on world markets on Monday but stocks fell. Furthermore, the constructive outlook around crude oil is also underpinned by speculative positioning, the so-called "Saudi put" and the ongoing OPEC+ deal to curb oil output.

Notícias recomendadas

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.