Mysterious sabotage: Attacking Gulf oil routes exposes alternatives to Hormuz

Saudi tanker Al Marzoqah was damaged along with a second Saudi vessel

Saudi tanker Al Marzoqah was damaged along with a second Saudi vessel

The Saudi Deputy defense Minister Prince Khaled bin Salman was Iran to blame for the drone attacks on several Ölpumpstationen.

"We have optional volumes (over and above the term contracts) from a number of suppliers which we can exercise to make up for any shortfall from Iran", Singh said.

Saudi Arabia didn't waste on time with payback of their own, though.

"We have seen aggressive Iranian action in the region", he said.

Tensions have flared in recent weeks after the USA sent warships and bombers to the region to counter an alleged threat from Iran. "And what always worries me in these sort of situations you have in particular with Iran where stakes are made with regards to local attacks and in normal situations that would be risky". The pipeline attack marked one of the rebels' deepest and most significant drone strikes inside Saudi territory since the conflict began.

Pakistan has been a key ally of the United States in its war on terror since 2001 and it also enjoys good relations with neighboring Iran.

He also dismissed as "ridiculous" claims that Iran provides Yemeni forces with missiles, saying "even a single piece of bread can not get past the siege" imposed the Saudi-led coalition of aggressors against Yemen.

Iran has responded to the accelerated USA military movement by threatening to abandon limits on uranium enrichment enshrined in the nuclear deal unless the remaining signatories find a way to let it access the economic benefits it expected to reap under the accord.

US President Donald Trump a year ago withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers and revived a range of sanctions against the Persian Gulf nation.

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Foad Izadi: You know there is a gap; Europeans wanted to stay in the Nuclear agreement, they opposed the USA getting out of the agreement without any justification and they don't want to see a military confrontation between Iran and the Unites States; they are anxious about the foreign policy that Trump and people around him are engaging in.

That came amid spiralling tensions between the United States and Iran after Washington sent a maritime strike group to the region and a series of mysterious sabotage attacks hit ships in the Gulf.

A military coalition under the leadership of the Sunni Saudi Arabia has intervened, therefore, in 2015 both politically and militarily in the conflict.

Mohammad Faisal, ministry spokesman, told a news conference Thursday that recent developments in the Persian Gulf region were disturbing and that Washington's move to "deploy aircraft carrier and bombers has added to the tensions and the existing precarious security situation in Middle East".

The U.S. State Department has ordered all nonessential government staff to leave its embassy and consulate in Iraq. We have also made clear to the Iranians that if American interests are attacked, we will most certainly respond in an appropriate fashion.

Tehran has called the US military presence "a target" rather than a threat, and said it would not allow its oil exports to be halted.

European nations have urged the US and Iran to show restraint. Gen. Chris Ghika, said earlier this week that there had been no increased threat from Iranian-backed forces in Iraq and Syria. His comments exposed global skepticism over the USA military buildup. Trump, goaded by the Saudis and the Israelis but against the advice of everyone else, unilaterally withdrew from the deal past year and imposed fresh sanctions that have devastated Iran's economy.

Iran recently said it would resume enriching uranium at higher levels if a new nuclear deal is not reached by July 7. That would potentially bring it closer to being able to develop a nuclear weapon, something Iran insists it has never sought.

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