Tensions in the Middle East have escalated following drone attacks on two major oil facilities in Saudi Arabia.

Iron Dome, Israel Missile Defence System
Iron Dome, Israel Missile Defence System

The pre-dawn strikes on Saturday knocked out more than half of crude output from the world’s top exporter, about five per cent of the global oil supply and cut output by 5.7 million barrels per day, Reuters reported.

Yemen’s Houthi rebels, who have been locked in a war with a Saudi-UAE-led coalition since 2015, claimed responsibility for the attacks, warning Saudi Arabia that their targets “will keep expanding”.

But US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo swiftly accused Iran of being behind the assault, without providing any evidence. The claim was rejected by Tehran which said the allegations were meant to justify actions against it.

Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, has promised to “confront and deal with this terrorist aggression”, while US President Donald Trump hinted at possible military action after Riyadh concluded its investigation into the attacks.

Vanguard News.

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