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        Houthis Attack Saudi Oil Infrastructure

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        The Houthis attacked Saudi Aramco sites in the eastern oil terminal of Jubail and the western city of Jeddah with explosive-laden drones on Sunday evening and Monday morning, the group’s Al-Masirah TV reported.

        While attacks on Saudi cities and energy installations have increased this year, they rarely claim lives or cause extensive damage. Aramco didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment and the Saudi government has not commented.

        The Houthis also said they targeted military sites near the southwestern towns of Jazan and Khamis Mushait. Saudi state-run Ekhbariya TV said the military intercepted several armed drones and at least one ballistic missile launched toward the Jazan area.

        Industrial Hub

        Jubail, about an hour’s drive north from Aramco’s headquarters in Dhahran, is a major industrial hub for the company, housing several refining and chemical ventures. The town on the Persian Gulf coast is home to one of Aramco’s largest refineries, a joint-venture facility with France’s Total SA that can process more than 400,000 barrels of crude a day.

        In Jeddah, Aramco has a fuel depot to supply local customers after closing its refinery there in 2017. The depot has already been hit this year by the Houthis.

        The Houthis have been fighting Yemen’s United Nations-recognized government since 2014. A Saudi-led coalition intervened the following year on the side of the government. The UN has called the conflict -- in which tens of thousands of people have died -- the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

        Saudi Arabia, which proposed a ceasefire in Yemen’s war last month, is seeking more help from the U.S. to defend its oil facilities, Bloomberg has reported.

        - Bloomberg 12 April 21 Mohammed Hatem