Arabia says a military response to the drone attacks on oil processing
facilities is on the table, but only after an investigation into the strikes is
“We want to mobilize international support, and we want to look at all options – diplomatic options, economic options and military options – and then make the decision,” Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said at an event held to coincide with the UN General Assembly on Tuesday, reminding his audience that Riyadh believes Iran was responsible for the strikes “because the equipment is the Iranian equipment.”
investigation into the September 14 strikes on Saudi Aramco facilities in
Abqaiq and Khurais should be completed “fairly soon,” al-Jubeir continued,
claiming all that was left was to “locate the actual launch site.” Given the
“range of the equipment,” he said, “we are certain it came from the north.”
“Once the investigation is complete, we will make the announcements and we will pin the blame,” al-Jubeir said, though his mind appeared to be made up who the culprit was.
a willingness to use “military options,” al-Jubeir said Saudi Arabia wants to
“make sure that we avoid war at all costs.”
Riyadh showed off pieces of the projectiles last week as “proof” of Iranian culpability, insisting that there was no way Yemen’s Houthis – who claimed responsibility for the strikes – could have done the deed.
The US, UK, France, and Germany – all of whom have sold weapons to Saudi Arabia for use in its war against the Houthis – also blamed Iran, insisting it was the only plausible explanation.
Iran has categorically denied involvement, questioning whether even the Saudis themselves believe it was responsible and noting that the Houthis “humiliated the United States” by beating the Saudis’ US-made missile defense systems.