Drone attack on KSA pipeline originated in Iraq: US officials

Iraq's prime minister, Adel Abdul Mahdi, denied that the country was used to stage the attack

Photo for illustrative purposes only
Photo for illustrative purposes only

US officials have reportedly said that the drone attacks on Saudi Arabia in May originated from Iraq, not Yemen, as previously thought.

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) first reported that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called on Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi to prevent any future attacks from being staged in Iraq.

The drone attacks took place on 14 May, and were thought to have originated in Yemen, as Houthi rebels from the country claimed responsibility for the attack, which struck two oil pipes along a major Saudi pipeline. Supply was not disrupted, and no one was injured. 

However, WSJ cited US officials familiar with the intelligence as saying that the attacks originated in southern Iraq. Abdul Mahdi said that there was no evidence that Iraq was used as a staging ground for the attack.

The drone attack followed the sabotage of four tankers off of the UAE coast, including two from Saudi Arabia. Just weeks later, two more tankers were attacked in the Gulf of Oman, near the Strait of Hormuz, further escalating tensions in the region.

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