Sunday, July 3, 2011

Saudi - US Security for Oil Facilities

From an AP story run in Army Times on new US-Saudi security cooperation - which might in part explain recent Saudi efforts to get other OPEC members to adjust prices down - although such actions would have other benefits for KSA.
The force’s main mission is to protect vital oil infrastructure, but its scope is wider. A formerly secret State Department cable released by the WikiLeaks website described the mission as protecting “Saudi energy production facilities, desalination plants and future civil nuclear reactors.”

The Saudis’ security worries were heightened by a failed al-Qaida car bombing in February 2006 of the Abqaiq oil processing facility, one of the largest in the world. The State Department cable said a subsequent U.S. assessment of Abqaiq security standards determined that it remained “highly vulnerable to other types of sophisticated terrorist attacks.” That warning was conveyed to top Saudi officials on Oct. 27, 2008.
“The Saudis remain highly concerned about the vulnerability of their energy production facilities,” the cable said. “They recognize many of their energy facilities remain at risk from al-Qaida and other terrorists who seek to disrupt the global economy.”

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