Saudi and UAE hit by maritime sabotage attacks

May 13, 2019 - 13:9

On Monday, Saudi Arabia's Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said that two of the country's oil tankers were hit by a "sabotage attack” off the coast of the United Arab Emirates. 

He said the attack had the potential to "threaten the freedom of maritime navigation and the security of oil supplies to consumers around the world."

The attack on the Saudi oil tankers early on Sunday came as the ships prepared to cross into the Persian Gulf, he added. 

He said no oil was spilled and there were no casualties, but Falih said there had been "significant damage to the structures of the two vessels.” 

Over the weekend, "false reports" claimed there had been explosions at a UAE port. This has since been clarified by the UAE, which acknowledged through a Foreign Ministry statement that "four commercial, civilian trading vessels of various nationalities suffered acts of sabotage." No further detail has yet emerged.

According to an Iranian state news agency, a spokesperson for Iran’s Foreign Ministry Seyyed Abbas Mousavi "called for the clarification of the exact dimensions of the incident.” 

Referring to the negative impact of these incidents on shipping safety and maritime security, he warned against plots by ill-wishers to disrupt regional security. Mousavi also called for the vigilance of regional states in the face of any adventurism by foreign elements."

(Source: Forbes)

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