The following is an excerpt from rt.com | July 29, 2018 |
While everyone has been watching the Strait of Hormuz amid rising tension between the US and Iran, a chokepoint on the other side of the Arabian Peninsula is now at the center of the action.
Saudi Arabia temporarily halted all oil shipments through the Bab al-Mandeb strait after Saudi Aramco reported attacks from Houthi rebels on two oil tankers. The two ships in question were very large crude carriers (VLCCs), each carrying 1 million barrels of oil, and one of them sustained minor damage. The Houthis said that they have the naval capability to hit Saudi ports and other targets in the Red Sea, according to Reuters.
In response, Saudi energy minister suspended oil shipments through the strait. “Saudi Arabia is temporarily halting all oil shipments through Bab al-Mandeb strait immediately until the situation becomes clearer and the maritime transit through Bab al-Mandeb is safe,” Khalid al-Falih said. The Kuwait Oil Tanker Company said that it might also suspend tanker traffic through the narrow chokepoint.
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