Tensions simmered with Iran over the weekend as Saudi Arabia, the United States and allies made it clear war should be avoided at all costs but that they would respond to security threats and defend their interests if necessary.
Following last week’s two attacks on key Saudi energy targets, which the Kingdom blames on Iran and that Iran officially denies, countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) began “enhanced security patrols” in the international waters of the Arabian Gulf area on Saturday, according to the US navy’s Bahrain-based Fifth Fleet. The United States also increased its military presence in the region in response to the threats.
Fighting also broke out again in Yemen, where Iran-backed Houthi rebels continue to threaten Saudi Arabia’s sovereignty and security across the border. On Monday, Saudi Arabia’s air forces intercepted two Houthi ballistic missiles over Taif, one heading for Mecca and the other for Jeddah, according to reports.