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FM: Iran wants to restore relations with Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain

Iranians seen during a rally prior to presidential elections in Tehran, Iran on May 16, 2017. ( Fatemeh Bahrami - Anadolu Agency )
Iranians seen during a rally supporting Iran in Tehran, Iran [Fatemeh Bahrami/Anadolu Agency]

The Iranian Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, said his country wants to restore relations with Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain, calling for dialogue to confront “extremism” in the region.

“As the President of the Republic had said, we are planning on restoring relations with Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain, and we have always welcomed dialogue,” Zarif said in an interview published by Iran Daily.

The minister stressed his country’s desire to support security and stability in the region, adding “the Americans have made baseless allegations and claimed that they want to reduce Iranian oil exports to zero; a claim that cannot be implemented. The countries that the US is currently negotiating with have announced that they will continue to buy oil from Iran”.

Read: Could Saudi Arabia replace all the barrels lost from Iran sanctions?

Saudi Arabia recently allowed the entry of an Iranian diplomat to head the Islamic Republic’s interests in the Kingdom, in a rare step since the two countries severed relations in 2016.

Diplomatic ties were cut following an attack on the Saudi embassy in Tehran and its consular office in Mashhad, which came after Saudi authorities executed Shia preacher Nimr Al-Nimr.

The interests section is expected to operate through the Swiss embassy in Saudi Arabia, in line with an agreement signed in 2017.

The on-going tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

The on-going tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

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