FILE: Saudi Arabia's crown prince Muhammad bin Salman FILE: Saudi Arabia's crown prince Muhammad bin Salman

Saudi Crown Prince blames Iran for tanker attacks

Sun, Jun. 16, 2019
CAIRO - 16 June 2019: Saudi Arabia's crown prince Muhammad bin Salman has directly blamed archrival Iran for attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman and said his country "won't hesitate to deal with any threat" against its people or interests.

"The Iranian regime did not respect the Japanese prime minister's visit to Tehran, and while he was there replied to his efforts by attacking two tankers, one of which was Japanese," Muhammad bin Salman said in press remarks.

"We do not want a war in the region...But we won't hesitate to deal with any threat to our people, our sovereignty, our territorial integrity and our vital interests," he said, according to the newspaper.

He added that the incidents require that the international community take a "decisive stand" to counter the threats.

Tensions have risen to new heights after two recent attacks on shipping in the Persian Gulf region -- both of which the United States and its Persian Gulf allies, including Saudi Arabia, have blamed on Iran.

U.S. President Donald Trump on June 14 accused Iran of carrying out the most-recent attack, on June 13, against two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman. The incident occurred during a visit by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to Iran.

The latest incident came a month after attacks on four tankers off the coast of the nearby United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.), an incident Washington and the Saudis also blamed on Iran.

Iran has denied any involvement in the attacks. On June 16, Tehran summoned the British ambassador after London said it agreed with the United States that Iran attacked the tankers in the June 13 incident.
 
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