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Saudi Arabia Says It Is not Behind Alleged Attack On Iran Tanker

A picture released by Iranian State TV IRIB allegedly shows the Iranian crude oil tanker Sabiti sailing in the Red Sea, October 10, 2019

Saudi foreign minister said on Sunday that Riyadh was not behind a suspected strike against an Iranian-owned oil tanker in the Red Sea, which Iranian state-controlled media said was hit on Friday by missiles but denied reports they came from Saudi Arabia.

"We did not engage in such behavior at all. This is not how we operate and that's not how we did (it) in the past," Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir told reporters in Riyadh.

"The story is still not complete. So let’s wait and find out what happened before we jump to conclusions."

There were no independent witnesses and no confirmation of the attack. Hours after Iran first said the tanker was on fore, officials announced that it was stable and sailing back to the Persian Gulf.

Tanker-tracking companies also confirmed that the Iranian vessel was moving at 9.5 nautical miles, a normal speed for a tanker, toward Iran.

In September, missiles and drones hit key Saudi oil installations causing extensive damage and disrupted 5 percent of world oil production. Saudi Arabia, the United States and Western European powers blamed Iran for the attack, which Tehran has denied.

Reporting by Reuters