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Yemeni Rebels Claim They Targeted Saudi Aramco in Jazan

Bloomberg, January 29, 2020

Jazan has no major crude production or export facilities. Rebels also say they targeted airports in Saudi Arabia

By Mohammed Hatem: Yemen’s Houthi rebels claimed that they launched attacks with missiles and drones on Saudi Aramco in the kingdom’s southern Jazan region.

The rebels also targeted Abha and Jazan airports as well as Khamis Mushait base and other key targets inside Saudi Arabia in response to airstrikes on Yemen, Houthi spokesman Yahya Saree said on television. He didn’t give a date or more details on the attacks. Brent crude futures jumped as much as 1.9% to $60.62 a barrel in London.

Saudi Aramco didn’t immediately respond to a request for confirmation.

Jazan is the site of a 400,000-barrels-a-day Saudi Aramco refinery, but the city, near the border with Yemen, isn’t home to crude oil production facilities or major export terminals. The Jazan refinery and petrochemical complex is expected to be fully operational in the second half of 2020, Aramco said at the time of its initial public offering.

The Iran-backed Houthis have been fighting a Saudi-led military coalition since 2015, a war that has regularly sent tensions in the Gulf soaring. They have repeatedly claimed responsibility for attacks on targets in Saudi Arabia, most notably the Sept. 14 aerial attacks that temporarily paralyzed half of the kingdom’s production capacity. The U.S. and Saudi Arabia, however, said Iran was behind that assault.

— With assistance by Fiona MacDonald

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