RIYADH: Two leading German parliamentarians on Tuesday blamed Iran for attacks on Saudi oil facilities and called for international action to “repress” the security and economic threat Tehran posed to the world.
The remarks followed an inspection visit by German Bundestag members Nikolas Lobel and Olav Gutting to the Abqaiq processing plant, one of two Aramco sites in the Kingdom’s Eastern Province hit in last month’s drone and missile strikes.
Gutting said that an on-site tour was necessary to help understand what had happened. “As a lawyer, I know the importance of evidence in a trial. It is both causal and plausible that the drone attack was carried out by Iran.”
And Lobel, who is responsible for the region’s foreign affairs committee, said: “We strongly condemn the raids on the oilfields and on the refinery. This severely violated the territorial integrity of the Kingdom.
“The responsibility for this attack is plausibly imputable to Iran directly or indirectly. Iran’s influence on the entire region has grown steadily in recent years.
“Sadly, Iran is successfully trying to support terrorist militias and destabilize other states. With its expansive ideological aspirations, Iran poses a threat to the Western world.
“Therefore, its influence must be repressed. That must be a common task of the international community,” Lobel added.
In a joint statement the two politicians said: “Saudi Arabia is a reliable and trustworthy partner for Germany. We are very interested in the positive development and economic diversification of the country as well as in a sustainable, successful implementation of Vision 2030.
“Germany wants to do its part. Saudi Arabia makes a significant contribution to military security and, not least, to the security of supply of the global economy. The attack on the oilfields of Aramco was therefore also an attack on the energy resources of the international community.
“With our visit, as members of the German Bundestag, we want to express our solidarity and our interest in strengthening Saudi Arabia in the region.”
The Sept. 14 attacks sparked fires at Abqaiq and the Khurais oilfield, knocking out more than half of Saudi Arabia’s daily oil production and causing major damage to the world’s biggest crude processing plant.
France, the UK and Germany have all since accused Iran of being behind the strikes.
Soon after the attacks, the Kingdom’s military displayed missile and drone debris to prove the raids were “unquestionably” sponsored by Tehran.
Saudi military spokesman, Col. Turki Al-Maliki, said at the time that the strike came from the north, not from Yemen, which is where the Houthi rebels who claimed responsibility for the attack are located. Both Iran and Iraq are to the north of Saudi Arabia.
“This attack did not originate from Yemen, despite Iran’s best efforts to make it appear so,” the colonel said. He accused Iran of working with its Houthi allies to generate a “false narrative” around the strike on the two oil facilities.