On March 11, Saudi Arabia acknowledged that a refinery located near the capital, Riyadh, had been the target of successful drone attack.
A source from the Ministry of Energy told the Saudi Press Agency that a suicide drone struck the refinery on the morning of March 10. According to the unnamed source, the attack resulted in a “small fire” that was quickly put down by first responders.
“Thankfully, the attack did not result in injuries or deaths,” the source said. “Neither the refinery’s operations nor the supplies of petroleum and its derivatives were affected”.
The Riyadh refinery, which is owned by Saudi oil giant Aramco, is one of the largest oil processing facilities in Saudi Arabia. The refinery can process up to 126,000 barrels of oil per day.
Saudi Arabia condemned the attack without making any accusations. Usually, the Kingdom hold the Houthis (Ansar Allah) responsible for such attacks.
Late on March 9, the Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthis in Yemen announced that it had shot down a Houthi suicide drone over the southern Saudi province of Jizan. The incident resulted in some losses.
The Houthis may be behind the attack on the Riyadh refinery. However, it is also possible that another side carried out the attack.
Early in February, a group calling itself the Righteous Promise Brigades carried out a drone attack on the United Arab Emirates in support of the Houthis. The group, which presents itself as a force native of the Arabian Peninsula, is reportedly backed by Iran and based in Iraq. It may be responsible for the attack on the Riyadh refinery.
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