Middle EastSaudi ArabiaYemen

Political sarcasm: Yemen’s Houthis offer to help protect Saudi ports

In the wake of an explosion at a Saudi fuel transport terminal, a senior Yemeni official has heaped heavy sarcasm on the kingdom over its failure to protect its ports, saying Yemen, if asked, may consider helping safeguard them.

Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, chairman of the Supreme Revolutionary Committee of Yemen, made the remarks in a post on his Twitter account on Monday after Saudi Arabia said that a fuel transport ship anchored at a Jeddah terminal had been hit by an explosives-laden boat.

The attack resulted in a small fire which was extinguished, but there was no damage to unloading facilities nor any effect on supplies, according to the Saudi Energy Ministry spokesman.

“These acts of terrorism and vandalism, directed against vital installations, go beyond the kingdom and its vital facilities, to the security and stability of energy supplies to the world and the global economy,” the ministry added.

Jeddah — the second biggest Saudi city — is home to a key Red Sea port and distribution center for oil giant Saudi Aramco.

Reacting to the explosion, Houthi said what the Saudi regime has termed as a “terrorist” attack was proof of the failure of the US and the UK to protect the kingdom.

He said in a sarcastic tone that the Yemenis may consider helping protect the Saudi ports, if asked.

“The Yemeni security and military organization has a lot of experience in confronting American terrorism and its branches,” he added.

The Singapore-based shipping company Hafnia said on Monday that there had been as an explosion and a fire while its oil tanker, the BW Rhine, was discharging at Jeddah port.

The ship’s crew put out the fire and no one was injured, it said, adding that parts of the vessel’s hull had been damaged.

“BW Rhine has been hit from an external source whilst discharging at Jeddah, Saudi Arabia at approximately 00:40 local time on 14 December 2020, causing an explosion and subsequent fire onboard,” Hafnia declared in a statement on its website.

Saudi Arabia launched a devastating military aggression against Yemen in March 2015 in collaboration with a number of its allied states, and with arms support from the US and several Western countries.

The aim was to return to power a Riyadh-backed former regime and defeat the Houthi Ansarullah movement that has taken control of state matters.

The war has failed to achieve its goals, but killed tens of thousands of innocent Yemenis and destroyed the impoverished country’s infrastructure. The UN refers to the situation in Yemen as the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

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