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Saudi oil production unaffected by drone attack on East-West pipeline

Energy minister Khalid Al-Falih says Saudi Arabia condemns 'cowardly attack' that led to fire, minor damage at pump station

Khalid A Al-Falih, Saudi Arabia's energy minister.
Omar Salem/AFP/Getty Images
Khalid A Al-Falih, Saudi Arabia's energy minister.

Saudi Arabia’s East-West oil pipeline was hit by an armed drone attack that started a fire at a pump station on 14 May, 2019, leading national oil giant Saudi Aramco to temporary stall the pipeline’s operations, Khalid A Al-Falih, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Energy, Industry, and Mineral Resources, said in a statement, according to SPA and Wam, respectively the state news agencies of Saudi Arabia and the UAE. 

The attacks were carried out between 6am and 6.30am local time, affecting Pump Stations 8 and 9 of the East-West pipeline, which transports Saudi oil from the Eastern Province to Yanbu Port. 

The attack started a fire and caused minor damage to Pump Station 8, and was later brought under control. 

Saudi Arabia’s oil production has not been affected by the 14 May attack on the East-West pipeline, SPA reported, quoting the Saudi energy minister, who is also chairman of Saudi Aramco. 

In its report citing SPA, Wam said that Saudi Aramco implemented “precautionary measures and temporarily stopped operation of the pipeline, as it is evaluating the situation and working on restoring the operations of the affected pump station and the pipeline”. 

According to SPA, Saudi Arabia’s energy minister said the kingdom condemned “this cowardly attack, emphasising that this act of terrorism and sabotage in addition to recent acts in the Arabian Gulf do not only target the kingdom but also the security of world oil supplies and the global economy”.

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