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Abu Dhabi Drone Attack
News Bytes 01/19/2022 4 Comments

A drone attack hit a key oil facility in Abu Dhabi, capital city of the United Arab Emirates, on Monday. Three people died in the attack, and Abu Dhabi’s international airport caught fire. The attack brought the long-running Yemen war into Emirati territory. Now fears over new disruptions to global energy supplies after the attack are pushing some oil to the highest price in years.

Yemen’s Iranian-backed Houthi rebels claim this week’s attack that targeted “sensitive Emirati facilities.”

The Houthis are an armed Islamist political movement. They fight those who seek to restore the lawful Yemeni government. Most political experts believe the Houthis are part of the struggle between Iran and Saudi Arabia for power in the Middle East.

Police from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) identify the dead as two Indian nationals and one Pakistani. The attack also wounded six people at a nearby energy company.

Following the attack, Saudi-led airstrikes pounded Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, killing and wounding civilians.

Taking human life grieves the God who made all people. (Genesis 6:6) How He must sorrow at such violence in the world!

Police say small flying objects, possibly belonging to drones, fell at the airport and an energy company. Three transport tankers caught fire at the energy company’s oil facility. Another fire burned at an extension of Abu Dhabi International Airport. Officials say there was no significant property damage from the incidents.

The UAE was a key member of the Saudi-led coalition that has waged war against the Houthis since 2015. UAE forces have largely withdrawn from Yemen. But they are still engaged in the conflict and support Yemeni soldiers fighting the Houthis.

Senior Emirati diplomat Anwar Gargash tweeted that Emirati authorities were handling the rebel Houthis’ “vicious attack on some civilian facilities” in Abu Dhabi.

Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. lies some 13 miles from the center of Abu Dhabi. It is a short distance from Al-Dhafra Air Base, a U.S.-French military installation. U.S. Air Force Brigadier General Andrew Clark says, “U.S. forces are ready and available to assist and support their Emirati partners if requested.”

The drone attack comes as the Houthis are suffering heavy losses. Yemeni government forces have pushed back the rebels in key provinces. The defeats are a blow to Houthi efforts to control the entire northern half of Yemen.

Blame for the attack on the UAE poured in from across the world. U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan says, “We stand beside our Emirati partners against all threats to their territory.”

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres denounced the assault as “prohibited by international law” and urged all sides “to prevent any escalation amid heightened tensions in the region.”

Saudi Arabia and a host of other Arab states called the assault “a cowardly terrorist attack.” Saudi officials, as well as U.S. and U.N. experts and others, have accused Iran of supplying arms to the Houthis.

The incident happened while South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in was visiting the UAE. The two countries have reportedly reached a deal to sell South Korean surface-to-air missiles to the UAE.

Analyst Torbjorn Soltvedt says the Houthi drone attack highlights the missile and drone threat faced by the UAE and the region’s other main oil producers. Fear over future attacks on the UAE has pushed prices for North Sea crude oil to their highest level in seven years.

He says without a solution to reduce regional tensions, Gulf Arab states “will remain vulnerable to attacks.”

(Satellite photo of Abu Dhabi International Airport on December 8, 2021. Planet Labs PBC via AP)

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Most recent comments

1st comment

How sad that all this stuff happens, just because of the pull of power of people.

See it’s not just Biden that

See it’s not just Biden that puts fuel prices up.

@ All/ This is Bella

Oh my goodness! I hope everything can get resolved peacefully and no more lives will be lost.


There's a girl in my online class that lives in the UAE. I'm not sure if she lives in Abu Dhabi, though.

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