On Tuesday, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan commented on the developments in the region. During his speech, he made statements targeting Iran. The Saudi minister said that Iran is acting in a negative way in the Middle East.
In his remarks, Faisal bin Farhan stated that Iran’s behavior threatens security and stability in the region by endangering shipping, arming Yemen’s Houthis, and fueling the political deadlock in Lebanon. He also stated that they received several reports claiming that Iranian-affiliated forces seized an oil tanker off the coast of the United Arab Emirates.
Speaking at a virtual meeting organized by a US think tank, Aspen Security Forum, the Saudi top diplomat said, “Iran is extremely active in the region with its negative activity, whether it is continuing to supply the Houthis with weapons or endangering shipping in the Arabian Gulf, which we have received reports coming in today that may indicate additional activity there.”
During the event, the Saudi foreign minister also touched upon the 2015 nuclear deal and reiterated his country’s stance that demands the revisal of the agreement in a way to ensure Tehran never obtains nuclear arms know-how. “We certainly support a deal with Iran as long as that deal ensures that Iran will not now or ever gain access to nuclear weapons technology,” he said.
Underlining that an Iran which acts in a way to boost the stability and prosperity in the region would be welcomed by Riyadh, Prince Faisal added, “But that would require Iran engaging in the region as a state actor in a normal way, not supporting militias, not sending weapons to armed groups, and most importantly, giving up a nuclear program which might be used to develop nuclear weapons.”
The foreign minister’s remarks came while Saudi Arabia and Iran have taken steps to mend ties between each other.
Meanwhile, the Saudi top diplomat also touched upon the relations with its Gulf neighbor, Qatar. Defining the current situation regarding relations with Qatar as “very good,” Faisal bin Farhan said the two countries are working closely on several issues, including the strengthening of the GCC member states.