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UPDATE: Saudi sources claimed that the explosiotn at the tanker near Jeddah was caused by a water-born improvised explosive device launched by the Houthis.
An explosion hit a fuel tanker off Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea port city of Jeddah, which is also known as the distribution center for oil giant Saudi Aramco.
The BW Group said that the explosion erupted after the Singapore-flagged BW Rhine was hit by “an external source”, but all 22 sailors on board received no injures. The BW Group warned that it was possible some oil had leaked out from the site of the incident.
— Ahed News English (@ala_alahed) December 14, 2020
About three weeks ago, on November 25, a Greek-managed oil tanker was damaged in an attack on a Saudi petroleum terminal located near the Red Sea city of Jeddah. Col. Turki Al-Malki, a spokesman for the coalition, said the tanker was hit by shrapnel resulting from an attack by the Yemeni Houthis using a water-born improvised explosive device. The spokesman claimed that the WBIED was intercepted. Nevertheless, the tanker’s operator, the Athens-based TMS Tankers, said the Maltese-flagged Agrari received a direct hit.
A few days earlier, on November 23, the Yemeni Houthis struck the Jeddah distribution station with a Quds-2 cruise missile. According to the Yemeni movement, the missile was developed and produced by its Missile Forces. Nonetheless, the Houthi successes in missile and drone development during a total naval and air blockade would hardly be possible without Iranian help.
The series of unfortunate events has been pursuing Saudi Arabia not only in the Red Sea, but also in Yemen. After the recent series of setbacks of pro-Saudi forces in their battles with the Houthis in the province of Marib, tensions between the UAE-backed and Saudi-backed groups in the south of Yemen once again increased.
The UAE-backed Southern Transitional Council (STC) is now sabotaging its de-escalation agreement with the Saudi-backed government led by Mansur Hadi and based in the port city of Aden. The further setbacks of Saudi proxies in Marib will likely lead to another escalation between the STC and Hadi government. The UAE-backed group uses the weakness of pro-Saudi forces to establish its own rule in the south.
- On December 13, Saudi-led coalition warplanes conducted 4 airstrikes on the Madghal area;
- On December 13, Saudi-led coalition warplanes conducted 5 airstrikes on the Maheliyah area;
- On December 13, Ansar Allah attacked positions of Saudi-led forces in the Asahel area;
- On December 13, clashes between Ansar Allah and Saudi-led forces were reported in the souh of Tal’ah and Rashaha Sharqi areas;
- On December 13, Saudi-led coalition Apaches conducted airstrikes on the Kitaf area;
- On December 13, Saudi-led coalition warplanes conducted airstrikes on the Haradh area;
- On December 13, the Liaison and Coordination Officers’ Operations Room (loyal to Ansar Allah) reported 215 ceasefire violations in al-Hudaydah during the past 24 hours;
- On December 14, UAE-backed STC forces ceased retreating from Zinjibar town and giving government buildings to joint forces despite the deal with the Saudi-backed government.
MORE ON THE TOPIC:
- Military Situation In Yemen On December 13, 2020 (Map Update)
- U.S. Approves $350M Mission To Help Saudi Arabia To Deal With Houthi Attacks After Successive Failures