World stands with Saudi Arabia over ‘cowardly’ attack

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The aftermath of the attack. (AN photos by Saleh Al-Ghinam)
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The Iranian-backed Houthis targeted the Abha airport for the second time in a month. (AN photos by Saleh Al-Ghinam)
Updated 25 June 2019

World stands with Saudi Arabia over ‘cowardly’ attack

  • Leaders denounce Houthi attack as ‘the height of inhumanity’

RIYADH: The terrorist attack by Iranian-backed Houthi militants on Abha International Airport in southern Saudi Arabia brought an angry international response on Monday with world leaders and global organizations denouncing what several described as a “cowardly act.”
A Syrian national was killed and 21 civilians were injured in the terror strike on Sunday at Abha airport.
Earlier this month, at least 26 people were injured when a Houthi missile fired from Yemen struck the same airport, which is used by thousands of passengers daily.
Strongly condemning the attack, Yousef bin Ahmed Al-Othaimeen, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation secretary-general, said: “The OIC condemns criminal acts carried out by Houthi terrorist militias against civilians, public facilities and holy sites, and holds those behind them fully responsible.”
Al-Othaimeen backed the Kingdom’s efforts to halt “dangerous terrorism” and called on the UN Security Council to “confront these terrorist acts targeting civilians, and threatening the security and safety of civil aviation.”
Meanwhile, Abdul Latif Al-Zayani, Gulf Cooperation Council secretary-general, described the attack as “a cowardly act of terrorism that violates international laws and endangers the lives of civilians.”
US Ambassador John Abizaid strongly condemned what he called a “cowardly attack” on Abha airport.
On the US mission’s official Twitter page, Abizaid said: “We condemn it in the strongest possible terms, and send our deepest condolences to the families and friends of those injured or killed in this outrageous attack.”
German Ambassador Jorg Ranau said: “Such a deliberate attack on a civilian target cannot be justified under any circumstances.”
The International Civil Aviation Organization also condemned the “outrageous attack targeting international civil aviation passengers,” and expressed its solidarity with Saudi Arabia.
Kenya’s Embassy in Riyadh said: “The continued attack on civilian facilities is the height of inhumanity and insensitivity.”


• A Syrian national was killed and 21 civilians were injured in Sunday’s attack on Abha airport.

• At least 26 people were injured in an earlier Houthi attack on the same airport.

“These attacks must stop,” the French Foreign Ministry said in a statement, condemning the Houthi attack on Abha airport for the second time.
Bahrain’s Cabinet condemned the targeting of civilians and expressed its support for the Kingdom “in all measures taken to safeguard its security and stability.”
President of the Arab Parliament, Mishaal bin Fahm Al-Salami, said the Houthi militia’s repeated attacks on civilians amounted to crimes against humanity and a violation of international humanitarian law.
The Organization of Arab Red Crescent and Red Cross also condemned the targeting of the airport.
Jordanian Ambassador Sufian Al-Qudah said that any attack on Saudi Arabian security was also an attack on the security of Jordan and the entire region.
The UAE strongly condemned the Houthi strike, which “flies in the face of all international laws and conventions.”
The attack was “new evidence of the Iranian-backed Houthi militias’ hostile and terrorist tendencies in the region,” it said.
“The security of the UAE and of the Kingdom is indivisible. Any threat or danger to Saudi Arabia’s security is considered a threat to the UAE’s security and stability.”
Egypt condemned the strike in the strongest terms with the Foreign Ministry affirming its support for Saudi Arabia “in taking the necessary measures to safeguard the security and stability of the Kingdom against such desperate attempts to undermine it.”
The Yemeni Foreign Ministry said that terrorist operations targeting civilians and civilian facilities constitute a flagrant violation of all international norms and laws, particularly international humanitarian law.
Kuwait’s Foreign Ministry said that the attack represented “a dangerous escalation that threatens security and stability in the region as well as undermining all chances for peace.”
Afghanistan called on the international community to confront the Houthis over repeated sabotage operations and the targeting of civilians, which it considers a war crime.
Djibouti also decried the attack, describing it as “terrorism carried out by the coup militias.”

Attacks on oil facilities in Kingdom threaten world economy: Saudi energy minister

Updated 15 September 2019

Attacks on oil facilities in Kingdom threaten world economy: Saudi energy minister

  • Saudi Aramco says no staff have been injured in attacks
  • The oil giant is working on restoring the lost quantities

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s energy minister said drones that attacked Saudi Aramco installations had caused an interruption of an estimated 5.7 million barrels in crude supplies and threaten the world economy.

Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said as a result of the terrorist acts, oil production in Abqaiq and Khurais was knocked out temporarily and that estimates show that 50 percent of the company’s production had been interrupted.

Part of the decrease will be compensated to clients through reserves, Prince Abdulaziz said in a statement carried on the Saudi Press Agency.

The newly appointed minister confirmed there were no injuries to staff at the locations targeted, adding that the company is still assessing the resulting damage.

The attacks not only target the Kingdom’s vital installations, but also target the international oil supply and threaten its security, he said, and are a threat to the world economy. 

The blasts took place at 3:31am and 3:42am at the two locations, both in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia, causing fires that were brought under control by emergency services.

The drone attacks, at the world’s largest oil processing plant at Abqaiq and at an oilfield in Khurais, highlight the importance of the international community to protect energy supply against “all terrorist sides that carry out, support and finance such cowardly disruptive acts,” the statement said.

He said that these blasts also knocked out the production of 2bn cubic feet of associated gas daily, used to produce 700,000 barrels of natural gas liquids, which will lead to an approximate 50 percent decrease of Ethane and natural gas liquids supply.

The statement said the company is currently working on restoring the lost quantities, and will present updated information within the next 48 hours.

World leaders condemned the attacks on Saudi Arabia on Saturday and those behind the terrorist acts. 

Donald Trump called Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to reassert his country's “readiness to cooperate with the Kingdom, by all means conducive to maintain its security and stability.”

The Crown Prince "underscored the Kingdom’s willingness and strength to thwart such a terrorist aggression and deal with its consequences,” SPA reported on Saturday.

The UAE said it “condemns this act of terrorism and sabotage and considers it as a new evidence of the terrorist groups’ attempts to undermine the security and stability of the region as a whole.”

“The Houthis must stop undermining Saudi Arabia’s security by threatening civilian areas and commercial infrastructure,” said the British government.

“The US strongly condemns today’s drone attacks. These attacks against critical infrastructure endanger civilians, are unacceptable, and sooner or later will result in innocent lives being lost,” said the US envoy in Riyadh John Abizaid.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was emphatic about the need to condemn Iranian aggression, specifically on Saudi Arabia, and the need to ensure the security of world energy supplies.

“Tehran is behind nearly 100 attacks on Saudi Arabia while Rouhani and Zarif pretend to engage in diplomacy. Amid all the calls for de-escalation, Iran has now launched an unprecedented attack on the world’s energy supply. There is no evidence the attacks came from Yemen,” he tweeted, “We call on all nations to publicly and unequivocally condemn Iran’s attacks. The United States will work with our partners and allies to ensure that energy markets remain well supplied and Iran is held accountable for its aggression”

The Houthis, who are backed by Iran, said they had carried out the attacks and that 10 drones had been used.