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The Latest: Bolton says key Saudi port was recently targeted

By The News · 01 of June 2019 01:38:25
AP Photo,, No available, FILE - In this Friday, May 24, 2019, file photo, U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton is surrounded by reporters at the prime minister's official residence in Tokyo, Japan. North Korea on Monday, May 27, 2019, has called U.S. National Security Adviser Bolton a "war monger" and "defective human product" after he called the North's recent tests of short-range missile a violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions. (Yohei Kanasashi/Kyodo News via AP, File)

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The Latest on developments in the Persian Gulf region and elsewhere in the Mideast amid heightened tensions between the U.S. and Iran (all times local):

10:05 a.m.

President Donald Trump’s national security adviser says there was a failed attack recently on the Saudi oil-port city of Yanbu.

The comments by John Bolton on Wednesday came during a briefing to journalists in the Emirati capital of Abu Dhabi.

Bolton’s remarks mark the first time anyone has alleged that Yanbu was targeted during the ongoing Persian Gulf crisis.

Yanbu is the terminus, the final point, of Saudi Arabia’s east-west pipeline. That pipeline was recently targeted by Yemen’s Houthi rebels in a coordinated drone attack.

Bolton said he suspected Iran was behind the failed attack, but did not elaborate.

Officials in Saudi Arabia could not be immediately reached for comment.

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9:55 a.m.

The top security adviser to President Donald Trump says that there’s “no reason” for Iran to breach the terms of its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers other than to seek atomic weapons.

John Bolton made the comment on Wednesday while speaking to journalists in Abu Dhabi ahead of meetings he planned with top Emirati officials.

Bolton said: “There’s no reason for them to do . it unless it is to reduce the breakout time to nuclear weapons.”

Bolton also claims that four oil tankers Emirati officials alleged were sabotaged off the coast of Fujairah were attacked “almost certainly by Iran.” He declined to offer any evidence to support his comments.

Bolton dismissed the idea there was any difference between his positions and Trump, saying: “I am the national security adviser, not the national security decision-maker.”

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8:55 a.m.

President Donald Trump’s national security adviser, a longtime hawk on Iran, is visiting the United Arab Emirates amid heightened tensions across the Persian Gulf.

John Bolton tweeted he had arrived in the Emirates for meetings Wednesday “to discuss important and timely regional security matters.”

America recently deployed an aircraft carrier and B-52 bombers to the Persian Gulf over a still-unexplained threat it perceives from Tehran. The U.S. also pulled nonessential diplomats out of Iraq and sent hundreds more troops to the region.

Meanwhile, Emirati officials allege four ships off their coast were sabotaged. Yemen’s Iranian-backed Houthi rebels have launched drone attacks on Saudi Arabia.

The U.S. pulled out of Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers a year ago. Iran now says it too will begin backing away from the accord.