Evidence mounts that attack on Saudi oil facility was launched from Iran
Saudi and US investigators have determined "with very high probability" that the weekend attack on the Saudi oil industry was launched from an Iranian base in Iran close to the border with Iraq, according to a source familiar with the investigation.The missiles do not have the range to have been launched from Houthis territory in Yemen. It looks like the Houthis lied about responsibility in a coordinated story with Iran for whom they are proxies in the war against Saudi Arabia.
The attack involved cruise missiles -- along with drones -- flying at low altitude, the source said, and their trajectory was from the north of the Abqaiq oil plant, which was struck by more than a dozen projectiles in the early hours of Saturday morning.
The missiles, according to the investigators' current assessment, flew over southern Iraq and through Kuwaiti airspace before reaching their targets. Kuwait on Monday announced it had launched an investigation into reports of sightings of drones or missiles shortly before the Saudi targets were hit.
The Pentagon declined to comment and Iran has not responded yet to CNN's request.
CNN's source said the missiles would have avoided traveling over the Persian Gulf where US and Saudi radar systems are strongest. The kingdom's air defense systems are focused on the Gulf.
On Monday, a US official told CNN that the US had assessed that the attack originated from inside Iran. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the press. One regional diplomat told CNN on Monday that while the US has told its allies it has intelligence showing the launch "likely" came from staging grounds in Iran, it has not yet shared the information.
That task may be made easier because some of the missiles failed to reach their targets, the source said, and wreckage was recovered from the desert.
"Some are in a good enough state to determine their origins," the source added.
Another source who has spoken with Saudi government officials has told CNN that based on images of the wreckage that fell in the desert, at least some of the missiles used are known as the Quds 1.