Saudi King Calls for International Response to Iran-backed Oil Fields Attack

The Saudi government reiterated its accusation that Iranian weapons were used in the attack, without elaborating further

Saudi Arabia's King Salman at the opening session of the Arab League summit in Tunis, Tunisia, March 31, 2019.
Fethi Belaid,AP

Saudi Arabia is calling on the international community "to shoulder its responsibility in condemning the perpetrators" and "clearly confronting" those behind an attack on the country's oil facilities over the weekend.

The government's statements were carried in state-run media following a weekly Cabinet meeting Tuesday that was overseen by King Salman, who was quoted saying Saudi Arabia is capable of defending against such "cowardly attacks."

The Cabinet said the attacks on an Aramco oil field and major crude processing facility threaten international security and global energy supplies. The government reiterated its accusation that Iranian weapons were used in the attack, without elaborating further.

The attack, claimed by Yemen's Iranian-allied Houthi rebels, forced a suspension of 5.7 million barrels of Saudi crude a day and 2 billion cubic feet of gas.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she doesn't see the attacks on Saudi Arabia as reason to end its ban on all arms exports to the nation.

An influential lawmaker in Merkel's party had suggested that Germany should consider allowing the export of defensive weapons systems into the kingdom. But the chancellor said Tuesday she doesn't "at the moment see any conditions for changing the stance of the German government."

While condemning the attacks on Saudi Arabia, she said ban was put into effect partially due to Germany's concerns over the conflict in Yemen, which hadn't changed.

She says: "I think the events show more urgently that everything must be done to find a diplomatic solution to the Yemen conflict even if that looks very difficult the moment, we must continue to try."