UAE says four vessels subjected to 'sabotage' near Fujairah port

14 minutes ago, NickW said:

The point is western powers should not have been there full stop as we were tricked (by Politicians and perhaps some warhawks in the upper echelons of the military) into believing that Saddam had capability to deliver Chemical weapons across the region possibly even as far as Europe. This was given as the reason to invade. 

We can talk about Saddams brutality but that was hardly unique - why not invade North Korea they are at least as brutal.  

Notice that "smokescreens" was given as an excuse for using white phosphorus.  We all know that's not why white phosphorus gets used, but no one can prove it. 

It's the same with invading Iraq: WMDs were the official reason, but no one cares about that.  Atrocities are ignored on a daily basis.  The real reason is oil - and not just that the world economy depended on OPEC oil.  The second half of the problem is that Middle Eastern nations keep funneling oil money into terrorism.  In some cases, their explicit goal is to spread Islam across the entire world, using violence if necessary.  The world is coordinating to contain that threat.  Toppling Iraq and Afghanistan sent a clear message: "You will behave, or we will destroy you"  Unfortunately, the US overestimated its ability to fight an insurgent war, ultimately failing to contain the threat. 

Then again, price spikes - in part a result of the war in Iraq - caused the shale boom.  Between impending electrification, efficiency, natural gas, and improved oil extraction technology, the developed world now has the ability to wean itself off OPEC.  Emboldened by its newfound leverage, the US is destroying the worst OPEC offenders one-by-one, strong-arming the remainder into doing its will, and slowly driving them all into conflict with each other.  They refused to be good neighbors*, and now they're being brought to heel. 

The developed world's goal is to buy needed oil without giving OPEC enough money to cause trouble.  Unfortunately, oil prices must remain high to drive technological change, and that gives OPEC too much money.  Ways must be found to spend that money before it can be transformed into terrorism.  Conveniently, wars are expensive - and the Middle East loves its wars.  If that kills millions of OPEC citizens, then so be it.  They chose to misbehave; their own people can suffer the consequences.  If we're lucky, enough death and suffering will mellow out Middle Eastern populations, transforming their culture into something reasonably cooperative.  If they prove uncooperative to the end, the world will simply stop buying their oil, allowing them to return to the primitive state we found them in. 

Meanwhile, the rest of the world will carry on in peace, immune to whatever nonsense the Middle East is engaged in. 

 

* For the last 1400 years, actually.  Islam has made countless attempts to invade Europe, enslaving more than a million Europeans in the process.  To this day, Islamic nations attempt to export their barbarism to the rest of the world. 

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28 minutes ago, BenFranklin'sSpectacles said:

Notice that "smokescreens" was given as an excuse for using white phosphorus.  We all know that's not why white phosphorus gets used, but no one can prove it. 

It's the same with invading Iraq: WMDs were the official reason, but no one cares about that.  Atrocities are ignored on a daily basis.  The real reason is oil - and not just that the world economy depended on OPEC oil.  The second half of the problem is that Middle Eastern nations keep funneling oil money into terrorism.  In some cases, their explicit goal is to spread Islam across the entire world, using violence if necessary.  The world is coordinating to contain that threat.  Toppling Iraq and Afghanistan sent a clear message: "You will behave, or we will destroy you"  Unfortunately, the US overestimated its ability to fight an insurgent war, ultimately failing to contain the threat. 

Then again, price spikes - in part a result of the war in Iraq - caused the shale boom.  Between impending electrification, efficiency, natural gas, and improved oil extraction technology, the developed world now has the ability to wean itself off OPEC.  Emboldened by its newfound leverage, the US is destroying the worst OPEC offenders one-by-one, strong-arming the remainder into doing its will, and slowly driving them all into conflict with each other.  They refused to be good neighbors*, and now they're being brought to heel. 

The developed world's goal is to buy needed oil without giving OPEC enough money to cause trouble.  Unfortunately, oil prices must remain high to drive technological change, and that gives OPEC too much money.  Ways must be found to spend that money before it can be transformed into terrorism.  Conveniently, wars are expensive - and the Middle East loves its wars.  If that kills millions of OPEC citizens, then so be it.  They chose to misbehave; their own people can suffer the consequences.  If we're lucky, enough death and suffering will mellow out Middle Eastern populations, transforming their culture into something reasonably cooperative.  If they prove uncooperative to the end, the world will simply stop buying their oil, allowing them to return to the primitive state we found them in. 

Meanwhile, the rest of the world will carry on in peace, immune to whatever nonsense the Middle East is engaged in. 

 

* For the last 1400 years, actually.  Islam has made countless attempts to invade Europe, enslaving more than a million Europeans in the process.  To this day, Islamic nations attempt to export their barbarism to the rest of the world. 

Hence the reason to support alternatives and get off  the oil Hook ASAP. 

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1 hour ago, NickW said:

Hence the reason to support alternatives and get off  the oil Hook ASAP. 

Y’all just aren’t grasping that renewables won’t dominate the grid.

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2 hours ago, BenFranklin'sSpectacles said:

Notice that "smokescreens" was given as an excuse for using white phosphorus.  We all know that's not why white phosphorus gets used, but no one can prove it. 

It's the same with invading Iraq: WMDs were the official reason, but no one cares about that.  Atrocities are ignored on a daily basis.  The real reason is oil - and not just that the world economy depended on OPEC oil.  The second half of the problem is that Middle Eastern nations keep funneling oil money into terrorism.  In some cases, their explicit goal is to spread Islam across the entire world, using violence if necessary.  The world is coordinating to contain that threat.  Toppling Iraq and Afghanistan sent a clear message: "You will behave, or we will destroy you"  Unfortunately, the US overestimated its ability to fight an insurgent war, ultimately failing to contain the threat. 

Then again, price spikes - in part a result of the war in Iraq - caused the shale boom.  Between impending electrification, efficiency, natural gas, and improved oil extraction technology, the developed world now has the ability to wean itself off OPEC.  Emboldened by its newfound leverage, the US is destroying the worst OPEC offenders one-by-one, strong-arming the remainder into doing its will, and slowly driving them all into conflict with each other.  They refused to be good neighbors*, and now they're being brought to heel. 

The developed world's goal is to buy needed oil without giving OPEC enough money to cause trouble.  Unfortunately, oil prices must remain high to drive technological change, and that gives OPEC too much money.  Ways must be found to spend that money before it can be transformed into terrorism.  Conveniently, wars are expensive - and the Middle East loves its wars.  If that kills millions of OPEC citizens, then so be it.  They chose to misbehave; their own people can suffer the consequences.  If we're lucky, enough death and suffering will mellow out Middle Eastern populations, transforming their culture into something reasonably cooperative.  If they prove uncooperative to the end, the world will simply stop buying their oil, allowing them to return to the primitive state we found them in. 

Meanwhile, the rest of the world will carry on in peace, immune to whatever nonsense the Middle East is engaged in. 

 

* For the last 1400 years, actually.  Islam has made countless attempts to invade Europe, enslaving more than a million Europeans in the process.  To this day, Islamic nations attempt to export their barbarism to the rest of the world. 

Iraq would have gone infinitely better if that moron Bush hadn't assigned that bigger moron Brenner to be in charge in Iraq. His idiocy was epic and I'm happy to lay 100% of the post invasion Fustercluck on his skinny shoulders. 

My son's best friend was there as a medic with the Rangers. They were treated like kings in the first days after the regime was toppled. Then that moron Brenner unilaterally, and with zero input from anyone, threw a hand grenade and disenfranchised everyone from the military and everyone who had been with the Baath party. Now they're unemployed and hopeless with nothing to lose, so why not take as many enemies as you can on the way off this rock? Biggest. Idiot. Ever. 

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1 hour ago, Ward Smith said:

Iraq would have gone infinitely better if that moron Bush hadn't assigned that bigger moron Brenner to be in charge in Iraq. His idiocy was epic and I'm happy to lay 100% of the post invasion Fustercluck on his skinny shoulders. 

My son's best friend was there as a medic with the Rangers. They were treated like kings in the first days after the regime was toppled. Then that moron Brenner unilaterally, and with zero input from anyone, threw a hand grenade and disenfranchised everyone from the military and everyone who had been with the Baath party. Now they're unemployed and hopeless with nothing to lose, so why not take as many enemies as you can on the way off this rock? Biggest. Idiot. Ever. 

Well I never . 

Something we actually agree on

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6 hours ago, NickW said:

The point is western powers should not have been there full stop as we were tricked (by Politicians and perhaps some warhawks in the upper echelons of the military) into believing that Saddam had capability to deliver Chemical weapons across the region possibly even as far as Europe. This was given as the reason to invade. 

We can talk about Saddams brutality but that was hardly unique - why not invade North Korea they are at least as brutal. 

“Vice” and “Shock and Ave” are the good movies to watch. I do have a huge respect to Dr Ron Paul who at times sound like a last sane person in entire US of A... 

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SAUDI East - West pipeline pumping stations attacked by drones. 

Anyone ready to venture a guess on what oil price would be if both Straight of Hormuz and export pipeline are out? 

http://www.arabnews.com/node/1496856/saudi-arabia

 

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11 minutes ago, DanilKa said:

SAUDI East - West pipeline pumping stations attacked by drones. 

Anyone ready to venture a guess on what oil price would be if both Straight of Hormuz and export pipeline are out? 

http://www.arabnews.com/node/1496856/saudi-arabia

 

It wont be good for anyone......................................... $145-165/bbl Dubai, $175-185/bbl Brent, $110-125/bbl WTI, $180-195$/bbl TAPIS

Saudi's may still be able to pump some (decent amount of) barrels out of some reserves out of their west and export from 3 locations.

But it wont be the full on normal supply to knock the prices back down

_______________________________________________________________________________________

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Drones Attack Saudi Aramco Pumping Stations

by  Bloomberg
|
Dana Khraiche
|
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
 
 
 
 
Saudi Arabia says unidentified drones attacked two pumping stations belonging to Saudi Aramco.

 

(Bloomberg) -- Saudi Arabia said Tuesday that unidentified drones attacked two pumping stations belonging to Saudi Aramco, forcing the state oil company to suspend some operations in the area to assess the damage. Oil prices rose.

The stations are linked to a giant pipeline transporting oil from fields in the eastern sector to the port of Yanbu on the western coast, state-run Saudi Press Agency reported, citing the Energy Ministry. The pipeline has been halted, but Aramco is working to restore the link and Saudi oil exports are continuing as normal, SPA said.

The attack comes amid rising tensions in the Gulf as the U.S. increases pressure on Iran. On Monday, Saudi Arabia said two of its oil tankers were among several vessels attacked while sailing toward the Strait of Hormuz, the world’s most important chokepoint for oil shipments.

Neither Saudi Arabia nor the U.A.E. said exactly what happened to the tankers or identified potential culprits. The manager of one of the tankers hit said, however, that the vessel had got a hole in its hull after being struck by an unknown object off the coast of the United Arab Emirates.

“These attacks prove again that it is important for us to face terrorist entities, including the Houthi militias in Yemen that are backed by Iran,” SPA said.

Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in neighboring Yemen said earlier in the day that they had targeted key Saudi installations using seven drones, according to the rebel-controlled Saba news agency.

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You want to break down KSA quickly, take out the water pipelines to Riyadh and see a panic, not an oil pipeline. At best the east-west oil pipeline handles what, 15%, and of course it has to handle internal demands. In fact, tankers ship oil from the east to the west too.

Iran is happy for the situation with Yemen, but they didn't create it, it's historical. Houthies were aligned with the Rashids in the 19th century to drive the Sauds out of what is now Saudi Arabia, and into areas of what is now Kuwait. The House of Saud has no shortage of internal allies which are waiting for their chance to flip. The real threat is internal, though I don't expect anything short term. It's not the Sauds that exploit Aramco for graft, it's the other tribes wanting their piece too.

If Iran was foolish enough to try and seriously disrupt things, the targets are fat. Ras Tanura and Abqaiq are all you need to know. Al Queda almost succeeded in taking Abqaiq off line years ago, and they didn't even properly know what they were doing. Take Abqaiq offline, essentially no exports. Those silly modified scubs are terror weapons of a sort, but no accuracy. It would take elite commandos, or a semi-suicide air attack. People can't just blend in there, so I just don't see it happening, unless you could convince and train and elite group of folks from India or Pakistan posing as truck drivers and construction workers. And that would take a long, long time to put in place and require extensive internal cooperation. A Gulf of Tonkin moment might happen, but Iran isn't about really do anything. 

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12 hours ago, DanilKa said:

concern is this may be Gulf of Tonkin/Iraq WMD moment with unpredictable outcome. RT terminals and Dhahran are short flight time away; they were shot at during last skirmish. 

Excellent observation; eyes wide open.

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17 minutes ago, John Foote said:

but Iran isn't about really do anything. 

ahem.

Some earlier Iranian subterfuges seem exceedingly well planned and executed.  Credit where credit is due:

●  Data Dump Purportedly Reveals Details on Previously Unknown Iranian Threat Group

 

Further, my guess is Iranian intelligence learned a heckuvalot from the much earlier Stuxnet attack, which was a joint state player initiatitive between U.S. and Israel.  I had discussed this Stuxnet attack at length on certain forums a number of years ago.  No, you won't be able to find my comments in a Google search.

Anyway, a petrochemical plant inside Saudi Arabia was hacked a couple years ago:

●  Triton/Trisis Attack Was More Widespread Than Publicly Known

 

Please feel free to draw your own conclusions as to what I may be inferring here.

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2 hours ago, Tom Kirkman said:

No, you won't be able to find my comments in a Google search.

Glad we are still able to find you, Designated Survivor!:)

Remember Shamoon? Impeccable timing, released after end of last working day before Ramadan break. It took quite a few machines down... 

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3 minutes ago, DanilKa said:

Glad we are still able to find you, Designated Survivor!:)

Remember Shamoon? Impeccable timing, released after end of last working day before Ramadan break. It took quite a few machines down... 

Heh heh, I've never seen the TV show Designated Survivor, but got your reference : )

Many hacks against oil infrastructure tend to go unreported.  Are visible, physical attacks against O&G the new black these days?

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20 hours ago, BenFranklin'sSpectacles said:

Y’all just aren’t grasping that renewables won’t dominate the grid.

Well many people were saying 10 years ago that wind and solar wouldn't ever contribute more than 1% to the grid. :D

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2 hours ago, NickW said:

Well many people were saying 10 years ago that wind and solar wouldn't ever contribute more than 1% to the grid. :D

Without massive subsidies, they wouldn't have, so that prediction was mostly correct. 

The subsidies are disappearing.  It remains to be seen if renewables can surmount remaining hurdles without government backing. 

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On 5/14/2019 at 10:30 AM, NickW said:

 The point is western powers should not have been there full stop as we were tricked (by Politicians and perhaps some warhawks in the upper echelons of the military) into believing that Saddam had capability to deliver Chemical weapons across the region possibly even as far as Europe. This was given as the reason to invade. 

We can talk about Saddams brutality but that was hardly unique - why not invade North Korea they are at least as brutal.  

Do you honestly believe the given reason for war was the true reason?  WMDs or not, the world economy requires that the Middle East be controlled.  If Middle Eastern leaders show signs of misbehavior behind closed doors - something only the elites and intelligence agencies will have knowledge of - a pretense for war will be constructed. 

What I find amusing is that Westerners pretend their economic prosperity isn't built on a mountain of dead bodies.  Even more amusing is that they pretend economic prosperity could be built any other way.  Even a cursory treatment of history unequivocally shows the world to be a violent, ruthlessly competitive place.  Y'all need to move through the five stages of grief already and get on with your lives. 

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(edited)

(Bloomberg) -- Saudi Arabia restarted its main cross-country oil pipeline after a drone attack by Iran-backed rebels that halted the link and escalated tensions in the world’s largest oil-exporting region.

Saudi Aramco resumed operations at the pipeline after a halt Tuesday, the state-run oil company said in an emailed statement. The drone attack  claimed by Houthi rebels in neighboring Yemen on Tuesday had targeted two pumping stations along the link, which crisscrosses the Arabian peninsula, carrying crude, natural gas and refined products.

The risks of conflict in a region that exports more than 16 million barrels of oil a day -- enough to supply all of Europe’s demand and more -- have risen since the U.S. revoked waivers this month that allowed Iran to continue selling oil to some customers despite American sanctions. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates -- Iran’s regional foes -- reported on Monday attacks on several vessels including Saudi oil tankers. Houthi rebels on Tuesday claimed they had used drones to damage Saudi oil-pumping stations.

The targeted pipeline carries crude 1,200 kilometers (746 miles) between the Persian Gulf and Red Sea, enabling the Saudis to ship oil from both sides of the country. Saudi Aramco, the world’s biggest oil exporter, said Tuesday that supplies of crude and refined products continued without interruption despite the attack. Iran denounced Sunday’s maritime incident near Hormuz and warned against attempts to destabilize the region.

It’s not the first time oil infrastructure has been targeted in Saudi Arabia, a country that pumps 10 million barrels a day, or about 10% of global production. In 2005, security forces foiled a suicide attack on the Abqaiq oil-processing center, which handles about two-thirds of the country’s production.

An uninterrupted supply of Saudi oil is crucial right now because the nation is almost alone in having enough spare production capacity to compensate for the slump in Iranian exports. After the U.S. earlier this month ended sanctions waivers for a handful of buyers of Iranian oil, Tehran responded by threatening to block shipments through Hormuz, through which about 17.5 million barrels of oil passes every day.

Edited by ceo_energemsier
correction

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(edited)

On 5/14/2019 at 10:31 AM, BenFranklin'sSpectacles said:

 Emboldened by its newfound leverage, the US is destroying the worst OPEC offenders one-by-one, strong-arming the remainder into doing its will, and slowly driving them all into conflict with each other.  They refused to be good neighbors*, and now they're being brought to heel.

Meanwhile, the rest of the world will carry on in peace, immune to whatever nonsense the Middle East is engaged in. 

What would you call these actions?  A holy war? Oil War? Plain warmongering?  Just being an a-hole because they can?

If the US is oil independent -and so powerful that it is immune to war - why go around provoking stuff?  Perhaps because the US loves to sell weapons?

The complete opposite of global peacekeepers...

Edited by Enthalpic

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Circling back around to something happening in the here and now...

Are we likening the tanker attacks to fictitious warmongering? 

pro-iranian media were the first ones to report the attack, so if it's not legit I'm not seeing it. 

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1 hour ago, Enthalpic said:

What would you call these actions?  A holy war? Oil War? Plain warmongering?  Just being an a-hole because they can?

If the US is oil independent -and so powerful that it is immune to war - why go around provoking stuff?  Perhaps because the US loves to sell weapons?

The complete opposite of global peacekeepers... 

It's not enough to simply leave the Middle East alone.  They use oil revenue to export violence and barbarism to the rest of the world.  The US will solve this problem by slowly bankrupting them.  In the end, all those US dollars will return to the US, and the Middle East will be rendered harmless. 

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20 minutes ago, BenFranklin'sSpectacles said:

The US will solve this problem by slowly bankrupting them.

I would be fine with that.  Triggering middle eastern wars so they kill each other off is not cool.

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14 hours ago, Enthalpic said:

I would be fine with that.  Triggering middle eastern wars so they kill each other off is not cool. 

It's definitely "not cool", but it may be necessary.  Much of the Middle East has a violent, medieval culture that's incompatible with modern civilization.  Sometimes the only way to change a culture is to drive it to the logical conclusion of its beliefs.  At the very least, I'd rather see them killing each other than killing Westerners. 

It was their choice not to behave; they can suffer the consequences. 

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Exclusive: Insurer says Iran's Guards likely to have organized tanker attacks

 

LONDON/OSLO (Reuters) - Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) are "highly likely" to have facilitated attacks last Sunday on four tankers including two Saudi ships off Fujairah in the United Arab Emirates, according to a Norwegian insurers' report seen by Reuters.

The UAE, Saudi Arabia and Norway are investigating the attacks, which also hit a UAE- and a Norwegian-flagged vessel.

A confidential assessment issued this week by the Norwegian Shipowners' Mutual War Risks Insurance Association (DNK) concluded that the attack was likely to have been carried out by a surface vessel operating close by that despatched underwater drones carrying 30-50 kg (65-110 lb) of high-grade explosives to detonate on impact.

The attacks took place against a backdrop of U.S.-Iranian tension following Washington’s decision this month to try to cut Tehran's oil exports to zero and beef up its military presence in the Gulf in response to what it called Iranian threats.

The DNK based its assessment that the IRGC was likely to have orchestrated the attacks on a number of factors, including:

- A high likelihood that the IRGC had previously supplied its allies, the Houthi militia fighting a Saudi-backed government in Yemen, with explosive-laden surface drone boats capable of homing in on GPS navigational positions for accuracy.

- The similarity of shrapnel found on the Norwegian tanker to shrapnel from drone boats used off Yemen by Houthis, even though the craft previously used by the Houthis were surface boats rather than the underwater drones likely to have been deployed in Fujairah.

- The fact that Iran and particularly the IRGC had recently threatened to use military force and that, against a militarily stronger foe, they were highly likely to choose "asymmetric measures with plausible deniability". DNK noted that the Fujairah attack had caused "relatively limited damage" and had been carried out at a time when U.S. Navy ships were still en route to the Gulf.

Both the Saudi-flagged crude oil tanker Amjad and the UAE-flagged bunker vessel A.Michel sustained damage in the area of their engine rooms, while the Saudi tanker Al Marzoqah was damaged in the aft section and the Norwegian tanker Andrea Victory suffered extensive damage to the stern, DNK said.

The DNK report said the attacks had been carried out between six and 10 nautical miles off Fujairah, which lies close to the Strait of Hormuz.

SENDING A MESSAGE

Iran has in the past threatened to block all exports through the Strait of Hormuz, through which an estimated fifth of the world's oil passes.

According to DNK, it was highly likely that the attacks had been intended to send a message to the United States and its allies that Iran did not need to block the Strait to disrupt freedom of navigation in the region.

DNK said Iran was also likely to continue similar low-scale attacks on merchant vessels in the coming period.

Iranian officials and the Revolutionary Guards' (IRGC) spokesman were not available for comment.

Tehran had already rejected allegations of involvement and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif had said that "extremist individuals" in the U.S. government were pursuing dangerous policies. No one claimed responsibility for the attacks.

DNK's managing director Svein Ringbakken declined to comment, except to say that "this is an internal and confidential report produced to inform shipowner members of the DNK about the incidents in Fujairah and the most likely explanation".

The UAE has not blamed anyone for the attack.

Two U.S. government sources said this week that U.S. officials believed Iran had encouraged Houthi militants or Iraq-based Shi'ite militias to carry out the attack.

In a joint letter seen by Reuters and sent to the U.N. Security Council on Wednesday, the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Norway said the attacks had been deliberate and could have resulted in casualties, spillages of oil or harmful chemicals.

"The attacks damaged the hulls of at least three of the vessels, threatened the safety and lives of those on board, and could have led to an environmental disaster," the letter said.

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