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Iran attacked Aramco to 'punish' America: Report

Reuters/Washington
Filed on November 26, 2019 | Last updated on November 26, 2019 at 07.02 am
Iran attacked Aramco to punish America: Report

(Reuters)

What ultimately emerged was a plan that stopped short of direct confrontation that could trigger a devastating US response.

Iran carried the 17-minute September strike on two Saudi Aramco installations by 18 drones and three low-flying missiles to punish the United States for pulling out of a landmark nuclear treaty and re-imposing economic sanctions on Iran, a Reuters special report quoted informed sources as saying.

Iranian security officials, including the top echelons of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, an elite branch of the Iranian military whose portfolio includes missile development and covert operations, gathered in May at a heavily fortified compound in Tehran to chalk out the plan, the sources said.

"It is time to take out our swords and teach them a lesson," Major General Hossein Salami, leader of the Revolutionary Guards, told the meeting, according to four people familiar with the meeting.

Though hardliners at the meeting talked of attacking high-value targets, including American military bases, what ultimately emerged was a plan that stopped short of direct confrontation that could trigger a devastating US response. Iran opted instead to target oil installations of America's ally, Saudi Arabia, a proposal discussed by top Iranian military officials in the May meeting and at least four that followed.


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