Get our newsletter delivered directly to your inbox
I have already subscribed | Do not show this message again
Your email has been successfully registered.
The two countries cut bilateral ties in 2016 over scandals around the execution of a Shiite cleric in Saudi Arabia and Riyadh's claims of Iran's meddling in the domestic affairs of regional powers, including the kingdom's.
Iran is involved in negotiations with Saudi Arabia to resolve the issues that prevent normal relations between the two countries, according to a statement issued by Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh, who has acknowledged for the first time in public the reality of these talks.
"De-escalation of tensions between the two Muslim countries in the Persian Gulf region is in the interest of both nations and the region," Khatibzadeh stated.
The ministry's press secretary added that Tehran uses its "best efforts" for talks to resolve standing issues between the two nations. The statement by Khatibzadeh comes in the wake of previous denials by Iran about such talks. Not long before the announcement by Tehran, the Saudi Foreign Ministry's head of policy planning, Rayed Krimly, shared with Reuters that Iran and Saudi Arabia are engaged in negotiations to reduce tensions in the region.
Diplomats hope the opening of direct channels between Iran and Saudi Arabia will signal a calming of tensions across the Middle East after years of hostilitieshttps://t.co/yq26mgcs3C
The two states severed ties in 2016 after Saudi Arabia's executed a prominent Shia cleric. This action was followed by an attack on the country's embassy in Tehran by an angry mob. Riyadh accused both the cleric and Iran itself of meddling in the kingdom's domestic affairs. The nation also claimed that Tehran meddles in the affairs of other regional powers, including providing support to Yemen's Houthi fighters, who are waging war against the local government and Saudi-led military coalition backing it.
Iran denied all the meddling accusations and repeatedly called on Persian Gulf countries to peacefully co-exist and resolve all regional conflicts and issues jointly. So far, no Gulf state has responded to Tehran's calls for cooperation.