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Saturday, January 23, 2021

US believes attack on Saudi Arabia came from SW Iran

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US believes attack on Saudi Arabia came from SW Iran
US believes attack on Saudi Arabia came from SW Iran

The United States believes Saturday's attack on Saudi Arabia's oil facilities originated in southwestern Iran, a U.S. official told Reuters on Tuesday.

Nathan Frandino has more.

The U.S. on Tuesday laid more blame on Iran for Saturday's devastating attacks on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia.

A U.S. official told Reuters that the attack had originated in southwestern Iran and three officials said the attacks involved both cruise missiles and drones.

The officials did not provide evidence but the revelations do indicate a higher degree of complexity and sophistication than initially thought.

The attack on the world's biggest crude oil processing plant knocked out half of Saudi Arabia's oil production.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Tuesday called out Iran during his meeting with Bahraini Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) MARK ESPER, DEFENSE SECRETARY, SAYING: "As we've seen from recent events, Iran continues to violate international norms and instead promote instability and danger in the region." Iran has denied it was behind the attacks, which were claimed by Yemen's Houthi rebels in their fight against a Saudi-led coalition.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Twitter: "The U.S. is in denial if it thinks that Yemeni victims of 4.5 yrs of the worst war crimes wouldn't do all to strike back." Zarif adding..

"Perhaps it's embarrassed that $100s of blns of its arms didn't intercept Yemeni fire." The U.S. has long sold weapons to Saudi Arabia, including munitions used to fight the Houthis in Yemen.

The spike in tensions between Iran and the U.S. appears to have derailed any chance of negotiations… after President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of a multi-party nuclear agreement, seeking a better deal.

Just last week, Trump had said he would have no problem meeting with his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani at the United Nations General Assembly later this month.

But Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Tuesday said Iran will never hold one-to-one talks with the United States.

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