Iran on Sunday denied accusations by U.S. Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, that it was responsible for a drone attack on major oil facilities in Saudi Arabia.
Mr Pompeo’s insinuations were absurd and inexplicable, and, therefore, of no effect, Foreign Ministry spokesman, Abbas Mousavi, told the ISNA news agency.
The attack on Saturday, which caused fires at two facilities operated by Saudi state oil giant, Aramco in the eastern province of Buqyaq, was claimed by Yemen’s Houthi rebels.
Yemen, one of the Arab world’s poorest countries, has been locked in a devastating power struggle between the Houthis and the Saudi-backed government since late 2014.
However, Mr Pompeo disputed the Houthis’ claim of responsibility.
“Tehran is behind nearly 100 attacks on Saudi Arabia, while Iranian President Hassan Rowhani and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, pretend to engage in diplomacy,’’ Mr Pompeo said in a tweet.
“There is no evidence the attacks came from Yemen.’’
Mr Mousavi on Sunday claimed that the attack was a response by Yemeni rebels to war crimes carried out by the Saudi-led coalition.
“Because the U.S. policy of maximum pressure on Iran has failed, the Americans have now switched to maximum lies,’’ he added.
Even in times of extreme hostility, politicians’ statements should have “minimum credibility’’, he said, concluding that the accusation showed the U.S. and Iran were pursuing “very different goals”.