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Saudi Refinery Targeted With Drone Attack

An unnamed party attacked a Saudi refinery in Riyadh with a drone and caused a small fire, the Saudi energy ministry said, as quoted by Reuters.

The attack was cut short and did not affect the operation of the refinery, officials also said. The party responsible for the attack has not been named.

"The refinery's operations and supplies of petroleum and its derivatives were not affected," the statement said.

"These repeated acts of sabotage and terrorism on vital installations and civilian structures ... do not just target the Kingdom but aim to undermine the security and stability of global energy supplies," the energy ministry also said.

A separate report by the Saudi Press Agency spoke about an attack by Houthi rebels from Yemen on "civilians and civilian objects in Jazan City, a Saudi oil industry hub.

Reuters noted in its report that the Houthis had not announced any attacks against Saudi Arabia in the last few days.

Saudi oil facilities are a top target for the Houthis, which Saudi Arabia is trying to oust from Yemen after they removed the Saudi-affiliated government of the country in 2014 and have since then assumed power in most of Yemen.

The Yemeni war, which has resulted in the worst humanitarian crisis in modern times, is widely seen as a proxy war between regional rivals Saudi Arabia and Iran.

While the Saudi forces intercept most of the drones and missiles the Houthis launch at targets in the Kingdom, some do get through. The most notable one so far was an attack that took place two years ago and took off 5 percent of the global daily oil supply offline as the missiles hit an oil field and a processing plant.

While the Houthi rebels took responsibility for the attack, the Saudis and their U.S. partners blamed Iran, which backs the Houthis.

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By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

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