- Earlier, US Defense Secretary Mark Esper said the United States would send troops to Saudi Arabia.
- Gen. Dunford described the deployment of troops as "moderate," saying that the number of troops would not be in the thousands.
- On Friday, journalists were taken to the Abqaiq oil factory and the Khurais oil field by the Saudi authorities to show them the destruction and recovery activities after the attacks.
The Commander in Chief of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, Hossein Salami, warned against attacking his country, saying that any such attack would result in the destruction of the invader. The statement of Gen. Salami comes after Washington’s announcement to send troops to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, following the attack on Saudi oil installations last week. Tehran denied the allegations of involvement in the attack.
Earlier, US Defense Secretary Mark Esper had said that after the attacks on Saudi Arabia’s oil installations, the United States would send troops to Saudi Arabia, at the request of the Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates. Esper told reporters on Friday that the deployment of these forces would be “defensive.” The final decision on the total number of troops has not yet been made.
Yemen’s Iranian-backed Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for the attacks on Saudi oil installations last week. However, the United States and Saudi Arabia have blamed Iran for the attacks. Esper made the remarks Friday with Joseph Dunford, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
On this occasion, Esper said that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates had requested assistance in this regard. He added that with the help of these forces, the air and missile defense systems of the two countries will be improved, and the United States will accelerate the delivery of defense equipment.
Gen. Dunford described the deployment of troops as “moderate,” saying that the number of troops would not be in the thousands. However, he declined to provide further information on the type of forces. According to The New York Times, when journalists asked Esper whether air strikes on Iran were still under consideration, the Defense Secretary replied that they have not reached that point yet.
After the attacks on two oil installations in Saudi Arabia, their restoration work is now underway. Amin Nasser, the company’s chief executive, said in a message to its staff that their oil production would return to normal by the end of September. The message added that Aramco has emerged stronger after last week’s attacks and said after the recovery, oil production will be the first priority.
On Friday, journalists were taken to the Abqaiq oil factory and the Khurais oil field by the Saudi authorities to show them the destruction and recovery activities after the attacks. Immediately after the attack, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Energy said that attacks on oil installations had reduced crude oil production by 57 million barrels per day, which is half the country’s oil production.
On Wednesday, the Saudi Defense Ministry claimed Iran had been involved in the attacks, showing the remains of drones and cruise missiles. However, a spokesman said that Saudi Arabia is still working on “identifying the launching point of the attacks.”
The US is also accusing Iran of involvement in these attacks. Senior officials have told US media that they have evidence that the attacks were carried out in southern Iran. Tehran, on the other hand, has repeatedly denied the allegations of involvement in the attacks, and President Hassan Rouhani called the attacks an act of retaliation by the Yemeni people.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Jawad Zarif recently said in a tweet, that the US “is in denial if it thinks that Yemeni victims of 4.5 yrs of the worst war crimes wouldn’t do all to strike back. Perhaps it’s embarrassed that $100s of blns of its arms didn’t intercept Yemeni fire.”