Johnson: Iran is responsible for attacks on Saudi oil facilities


Britain attributes responsibility for attacks on Saudi Aramco to Iran, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Monday, saying his country might join a US-led military effort and would work with the United States and European allies to determine a joint response.

“We believe it is very likely that Iran will be truly responsible,” Johnson told reporters on the plane to the UN General Assembly in New York.

A British government official said the Houthi group’s claim of responsibility for the attacks was “unbelievable” because the scale, sophistication and extent of the attacks did not match the group’s potential. “It is unbelievable that the Iranian government did not pass it,” he said.

Asked whether Britain would rule out military action, Johnson said he would closely monitor the US proposal to do more to help defend Saudi Arabia.

“Clearly, if we are asked either by the Saudis or by the Americans to have a role, we will consider what ways we can be useful,” he said.

He said he would discuss Iran’s actions in the region with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at UN meetings, as well as urging the release of several dual nationals who he said were being held “illegally and unfairly”.
On Sunday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the United States would seek international support in the face of Iran, which Washington accuses of targeting two oil facilities in Saudi Arabia.

“President (Donald) Trump and I personally want to give diplomacy every chance of success,” Pompeo said on ABC. “We hope the United Nations will take a firm stand.”

He pointed out that the international organization “was established for this kind of things – when attacking another country – and we hope to move in this regard.”
He reiterated that what Saudi Arabia was subjected to was “an Iranian attack carried out with cruise missiles.”

For his part, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, on Sunday, denied his country’s involvement in the attacks on oil facilities belonging to Saudi Aramco, in an interview on the network “CBS” US.

Zarif stressed that the results of any UN investigation would not be accepted because they had not been informed, nor on what basis.

Zarif pointed out that the matter will be discussed with the United Nations, stressing their full confidence that any impartial investigation by the United Nations will confirm that Tehran does not attack, as he put it.