For 25 minutes from 9:00 this morning, President Moon Jae-in spoke on the phone with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. During the conversation, they discussed the latest developments in the Middle East, including the recent attacks on oil facilities in the eastern part of Saudi Arabia.
President Moon said, “It is very regrettable that the key oil production facilities at Abqaiq and Khurais sustained enormous damage from drone attacks.” The President went on to express his sympathy to the Crown Prince and the people of Saudi Arabia.
President Moon added, “The attacks against the Saudi oil facilities threaten the security of not only Korea but also the entire world, and the international community needs to respond resolutely. The Korean Government stands in support of the international community’s endeavors to eradicate terrorism. Such attacks that jeopardize international energy security must stop.”
In reply, the Saudi Crown Prince expressed his gratitude to President Moon for denouncing the current situation that is threatening global security. He went on to highlight the importance of the international community’s role.
The Crown Prince said that the unprecedented attacks on the key oil production sites placed the Middle East and other global oil supply markets under threat. Speaking of joint fact-finding work being carried out with the United Nations and other relevant international organizations, the Crown Prince stressed that the international community should resolutely respond with one united voice to prevent the recurrence of similar incidents.
The Crown Prince requested a joint response in cooperation with nations that have friendly relations with Saudi Arabia and assistance with establishing an air defense system to stem any recurrence. In this regard, the two leaders agreed to engage in close consultations going forward.
President Moon continued, “About 30 percent of Korea’s oil imports come from Saudi Arabia. I hope the facilities attacked will be repaired at the earliest date possible. If Korea can participate in any way in the restoration process, we are more than willing to respond to a request.”
The Crown Prince said that although Saudi Arabia’s oil production dropped by half because of the terrorist attacks, recovery efforts are making speedy progress, including an emergency release of the oil reserve. The Crown Prince went on to say that while about two-thirds of the production facilities have been restored, output will be restored to one hundred percent within 10 days.
Meanwhile, President Moon expressed hope that bilateral relations will develop further by saying, “The follow-up measures on national defense and defense industry cooperation are proceeding quickly after the Korea-Saudi Arabia summit in June.”
The Crown Prince said his visit to Korea in June was very beneficial and has led to great achievements, giving high marks to the fact that bilateral cooperation is advancing in multiple areas, including construction, infrastructure and the defense industry.