Suicide Bombers Attack Saudi Oil Facility

CAIRO, Egypt (AP) - Suicide bombers in two explosives-packed cars attacked an oil facility in eastern Saudi Arabia on Friday, damaging a pipeline, an Arab satellite television station reported. CPPara1End

CPPara2A Saudi oil official confirmed that an explosion rocked a major oil processing facility in the eastern part of the country, but gave no details. CPPara2End

CPPara3The Saudi-owned channel Al-Arabiya said one vehicle detonated when guards opened fire as it attempted to drive through the facility's gates. CPPara3End

A second vehicle was stopped and two people inside it were killed, Al-Arabiya said. None of the guards were hurt, it said.

The attackers' cars bore the logo of Aramco, the state oil company that owns the facility, Al-Arabiya said.

Al-Arabiya said that oil briefly stopped flowing through the facility after the attack but had since resumed. The station did not give sources for its report.

It was the first attack on an oil facility in the kingdom in recent memory, although oil company offices previously have been attacked.

Crude oil futures soared nearly $2 on the New York Mercantile Exchange, to $62.51 US a barrel.

The Saudi oil official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said he did not know the cause of the explosion in Buqayq, a major oil complex on the eastern side of Saudi Arabia, about 70 kilometres southwest of Dammam.

A Saudi Interior Ministry spokesman, Lt.-Gen. Mansour al-Turki told The Associated Press: "I have no information. I am following this up."