Russia offers Saudi missile defences after attack

AFP , Monday 16 Sep 2019

Russian President Putin attends a joint news conference with his counterparts Erdogan of Turkey and
Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a joint news conference with his counterparts Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey and Hassan Rouhani of Iran (Photo: REUTERS)

Russian President Vladimir Putin offered to sell Saudi Arabia its missile defence systems on Monday in the wake of the weekend attack on its oil facilities.

"We are ready to help Saudi Arabia so that she can protect her territory.

"She can do so in the same way that Iran has already done in buying the S-300 Russian missile system and the same way that Turkey has already done in buying the S-400 Russian missile system," Putin said at a press conference in Ankara, alongside the Turkish and Iranian leaders.

His comments come after the Kremlin warned against a hasty reaction to the strikes, which Washington has blamed on Iran.

But the attacks were initially claimed by Iran's Huthi rebel allies in Yemen, where a Saudi-led coalition is bogged down in a five-year war.

Speaking alongside Putin, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said the attacks were an act of self-defence by Yemeni rebels.

"Yemen is the target of daily bombings... The people of Yemen have been forced to respond, they are only defending themselves," he said.

Huthi rebels threatened on Monday to carry out more strikes and urged foreigners to stay away.

On Monday, oil prices made their biggest jump since the Gulf War after President Donald Trump warned that the US was "locked and loaded" to respond to the attacks on the Saudi oil infrastructure.

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