Saudi Minister Adel al-Jubeir: 'Appeasing Iran' Fuels Tehran's 'Aggressive Behavior'
Riyadh claimed that the projectiles that earlier in September struck two key Saudi Aramco oil production facilities in Abqaiq and Khurais were produced in Iran and were fired from the direction of Iranian territory.
"The Iranian history of the past 40 years has been one of aggression especially against my country [...] Appeasing Iran has only fueled Iran's aggressive behavior", Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir told Fox News.
As a result of the 14 September attacks, Saudi Arabia suspended production of an reported 5.7 million barrels of crude oil per day, over half of its total daily output, according to Riyadh statements.
Although Yemen's Houthi movement acknowledged responsibility for the attacks, the United States put the blame on Iran, as have France, Germany, and the United Kingdom. Iran denies all claims of involvement in the devastating attacks on its oil production infrastructure.
"We have been calling for a global effort to contain Iran's aggressive behavior [...] Iran has to decide if it's a revolution or a nation-state. If it's a nation-state, it must abide by the rules of international law, the sovereignty of nations, and respect the principle of non-interference in the affairs of other countries", Adel al-Jubeir claimed, cited by Fox News.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, in his latest address to the United Nations General Assembly, fired back at the accusations.
'The security of Saudi Arabia shall be guaranteed with the termination of aggression to Yemen rather than by inviting foreigners [...] We are ready to spend our national strength and regional credibility and international authority", Rouhani said, pointing to an ongoing war in Yemen, the Middle East's poorest nation.
In a separate statement, broadcast by Iranian television on Friday, Rouhani slammed accusations as a "plot" by Riyadh and Washington.
"This plot, staged by the United States, Saudi Arabia and a range of other countries, has faded significantly after the explanations", Rouhani said, noting that he was still waiting for proof of Iran's direct involvement.
The Saudi Aramco attacks came amid increased tension in the Middle East and in the Gulf region primarily due to the unilateral withdrawal by the Trump administration in 2018 from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as Iran nuclear deal, which envisaged the dismantling of Tehran's nuclear weapons program in exchange for sanctions relief for the Islamic republic.
Saudi Aramco's oil facilities were attacked just days after reports that Trump floated the idea of lifting sanctions against Iran during a discussion with former National Security Adviser John Bolton. Bolton reportedly strongly opposed Trump's offer. Trump subsequently fired Bolton, noting that the two had "strong" disagreements, particularly over US foreign policy toward Tehran.
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