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Saudis criticise Western policy in Middle East

February 10, 2014 at 10:06 am

In an op-ed published by the New York Times on Tuesday, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Britain criticised the US and its Western allies regarding their policy in Syria and Iran. “We believe that many of the West’s policies on both Iran and Syria risk the stability and security of the Middle East,” wrote Mohammed bin-Nawaf.

As a result, the ambassador said, his country would not keep silent. “This is a dangerous gamble, about which we cannot remain silent, and we will not stand idly by.”

Bin-Nawaf based his piece on the latest rapprochement between the West and Iran, which he said has been involved in supporting the Syrian regime carrying out crimes against civilians. “This year’s talks with Iran may dilute the West’s determination to deal with both governments,” he argued. “What price is ‘peace’ though, when it is made with such regimes?”

He went on to explain what he thinks about the US-Iran rapprochement: “This year, for all their talk of ‘red lines’, when it counted, our partners have seemed all too ready to concede our safety and risk our region’s stability.”

Observers believe that this is part of a series of candid criticism by Saudi Arabia of the West’s policy. Ambassador Bin-Nawaf describes his country as “a friend for almost a century”.