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Kuwait hails outcome of Iran Foreign Minister's visit to Saudi Arabia

August 18, 2023 at 5:07 pm

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian (C) is being received by Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (R) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on August 18, 2023 [Iranian Foreign Ministry/Handout/Anadolu Agency]

Kuwait’s Foreign Minister, on Friday, welcomed the results of the visit of his Iranian counterpart to Saudi Arabia, expressing his hope that it would be “the beginning of a bright page in the history of Gulf and Tehran relations”, Anadolu Agency reports. 

On Thursday, Iranian Foreign Minister, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, arrived in Saudi Arabia on the first official visit by a top Iranian diplomat to Saudi Arabia in more than seven years.

Kuwaiti Foreign Minister, Salem Abdullah Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, expressed his “welcome to the results of the visit of the Foreign Minister of Iran, friendly to Saudi Arabia, and his meeting with his Saudi counterpart, Prince Faisal bin Farhan”, the Kuwaiti Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Al-Sabah, however, did not clarify or reveal the nature of those results.

The visit came amid a Saudi-Kuwaiti dispute with Iran over the Durra/Arash natural gas field, which has not yet been resolved.

Saudi Arabia and Kuwait uphold their full right and sovereignty over this field, which they called Durra, but Iran says that the field, which it refers to as Arash, is a right for it.

The natural gas field is located in the northern Persian Gulf with an estimated capacity of 220 billion cubic meters of gas.

Tehran claims that 40 per cent of the field lies in Iranian territorial waters, while 60 per cent is in the divided neutral zone between Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.

Al-Sabah expressed his hope that “this visit will be a step in building strong relations between the two countries that are dominated by mutual respect and will be the beginning of a bright page in the history of Gulf-Iranian relations.”

He also expressed his wishes that these relations be based on “the principles of good neighbourliness and non-interference in the domestic affairs of other countries, strengthening relations and building bridges of cooperation, dialogue and mutual understanding.”

Riyadh and Tehran have recently re-opened embassies, based on an agreement reached last March in Beijing.

The two countries had severed diplomatic ties in January 2016 after the Saudi Embassy in Tehran and consulate in Mashhad were stormed by angry mobs following the execution of a Saudi Shia cleric.

The two neighbours launched talks to revive ties in April 2021, brokered by Iraq and Oman. A breakthrough was reached nearly two years later by courtesy of China.

READ: Saudi Crown Prince meets Iran Foreign Minister as relations thaw