An article published on the blog of international Arabic news television channel Al Arabiya on Thursday claims that an Iran state-linked Telegram channel has posted a video purportedly showing a simulated attack on Saudi Arabia.
Al Arabiya says the video was posted by an IRGC-affiliated Telegram channel with over 350,000 subscribers, and shows a simulated drone attack against Saudi Arabia national oil company, Saudi Aramco’s, oil facilities.
On Tuesday, the Wall Street Journal reported that Saudi Arabia had shared intelligence with Washington warning of an imminent attack from Iran against the Kingdom. Iran has rubbished these claims, terming reports of Iranian threats against Saudi Arabia as “baseless accusations.”
If true, the alleged imminent attacks have a recent precedent.
Three years ago, Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthis launched a drone attack on Aramco oil facilities in Eastern Saudi Arabia, cutting Saudi oil production in half and taking off a good 5% of global supply off the market. The claims add a fresh twist to the Russian war on Ukraine considering that Russia has been using Iranian drones in Ukraine. Just a day ago, CNN reported that Iran is getting ready to send ~1,000 additional weapons, including more attack drones and surface-to-surface short range ballistic missiles, to Russia.
The new alleged intelligence of a potential Iranian attack on Saudi oil facilities comes as the U.S. is in the middle of a heated debate about defense provisions for Saudi Arabia. Earlier in October, Democrats were calling for the suspension of transfers of Patriot missiles to Saudi Arabia, as relations continued to sour.
Shortly afterwards, U.S. President Joe Biden condemned the decision by OPEC+ to cut oil production by 2 million barrels per day, lambasting Saudi Arabia and the cartel for taking sides with Russia. Biden vowed to “consult with Congress” on ways to “reduce OPEC’s control over energy prices,” bringing the specter of the NOPEC bill, once again, to the forefront.
By Alex Kimani for Oilprice.com
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