Published On: Sat, Aug 19th, 2023

As Relations Improve, Saudi Crown Prince Visits Iran’s Foreign Minister

Iran and Saudi Arabia

A meeting between Iran’s foreign minister and the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed bin Salman took place on Friday during the course of the former’s visit to the kingdom. This meeting is a hint that Iran and Saudi Arabia are attempting to alleviate tensions between them after years of unrest.

The longtime adversaries have been involved in what authorities in both Riyadh and Tehran have considered a proxy fight across the entire Middle East. It might have been impossible only months ago for images of Iran’s senior ambassador, Hossein Amirabdollahian, seated with Prince Mohammed. These images might have been inconceivable. At one time in 2017, the prince went even as far as to equate the Leader of the Islamic Revolution in Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, with Adolf Hitler.

Saudi Arabia and Iran have made progress in reopening diplomatic offices in their respective nations since they reached a détente in March, which was mediated by China. However, this did not happen immediately.

The even more hard-line President of Iran Ebrahim Raisi, who is a favorite of Khamenei, has been invited to pay a visit the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia by King Salman of Saudi Arabia.

However, difficulties still exist, particularly over Iran’s expanding nuclear program, the war in Yemen that is being directed by Saudi Arabia, and the maintenance of security throughout the region’s waterways.

In the meantime, the United States is attempting to clinch an agreement with Iran to liberate American individuals who have been held in return for releasing millions of dollars that have been held hostage in South Korea, whilst at the same time increasing the number of its troops stationed in the Persian Gulf.

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Pictures of Prince Mohammed chatting with the ambassador were broadcast on the Saudi official television network in the city of Jeddah, which is located on the Red Sea.

The Saudi News Agency, which is administered by the state, did not provide many concrete details about their conversation, stating only that the two leaders discussed relations and “future possibilities for collaboration.”

Amirabdollahian claimed in a post he made on X, which was then known as Twitter that the two men conferred for a period of ninety minutes during their time together in Jeddah.

In his position, the foreign minister called for negotiations that are honest, open, helpful, and constructive, and that are founded on neighborly policy. Because of the decisions made by the leaders of both nations, there has been a continuation of stable bilateral ties in every area. We are in agreement about the concept of security and growth for all in the region as a whole.

Amirabdollahian traveled to Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia, on Thursday in order to meet with Prince Faisal bin Farhan, who is his counterpart. In 2016, following the invasion of Saudi diplomatic posts in Iran by demonstrators, the kingdom severed its ties with Iran.

The execution of a renowned Shiite imam along with 46 others by Saudi Arabia a few days earlier was the spark that ignited the uprisings. The kingdom also originally supported rebels who were attempting to topple Bashar Assad, the president of Syria, who is supported by Iran. At the same time, the kingdom opposed the Iranian-backed armed organization Hezbollah in Lebanon.

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Iran has been accused of carrying out a number of separate strikes ever since the United States withdrew from the international nuclear agreement reached with Iran in 2018. One of these attacks took place in 2019, and it was directed against the core of Saudi Arabia’s oil sector. As a result, petroleum production in the country was briefly cut in half.

However, as a result of the widespread outbreak of the coronavirus and the disorderly withdrawal of the United States from Afghanistan, Gcc Arab nations such as Saudi Arabia are now reevaluating how to handle their relations with Iran.

Prince Mohammed also desires for there to be peace in the Middle East and for the price of oil to remain constant so that he can carry out his ambitious and expensive plans for the development of the country.

The two countries came to an arrangement in March to reopen their diplomatic missions in China. Iran and kingdom.

Until Amirabdollahian’s journey, the only other foreign minister of Iran who traveled to Saudi Arabia on an official tour was Mohammad Javad Zarif. Zarif went to the country in 2015 to express condolences following the passing of King Abdullah. Amirabdollahian’s visit was the first time an Iranian foreign minister had been to Saudi Arabia since 2015.