Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif said in the Syrian capital Damascus on Wednesday (May 12) that Iran has had some contacts with Saudi Arabia and that Iran is ready to establish a “close relationship” with Saudi Arabia.
Zarif visited Syria on the same day and held talks with Syrian President Bashar Assad and Foreign Minister Mekdad on bilateral relations, the Syrian political process, negotiations on the Iranian nuclear issue, and the regional situation. During the talks, the two sides condemned Israel’s recent actions against Palestine.
Zarif said at a press conference after the meeting with Mekdad that Iran is ready to establish a “close relationship” with Saudi Arabia, and Syria also welcomes cooperation between Arab countries. He said that Iran has had some contacts with Saudi Arabia, and Iran hopes that such contacts will help the two countries to strengthen cooperation and achieve regional stability.
Zarif emphasized the importance of the upcoming Syrian presidential election, saying that Iran is ready to become an observer in this election. He also said that after obtaining Syria’s consent, Iran will open a consulate general in Aleppo, the capital of Aleppo Province in northern Syria, to strengthen bilateral economic and trade cooperation.
Mekdad stated that Syria supports Iran’s demands in the negotiations on the Iranian nuclear issue; Syria and Iran have long worked hard to bridge the positions of Arab and Islamic countries. Syria “welcomes any move in this direction. step”.
In January 2016, Saudi Arabia executed several prisoners on suspicion of engaging in terrorist activities, including a well-known Shi’ite religious figure, which triggered protests by the Iranian people. The Saudi embassy in Iran was attacked by the protesters. Saudi Arabia and Iran followed. Sever diplomatic relations. After the outbreak of the Syrian crisis in 2011, relations between Syria and Saudi Arabia declined rapidly. In 2012, Saudi Arabia cut off diplomatic relations between the two countries.
On May 10, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Khatibzad confirmed that Iran and Saudi Arabia held talks a few days ago, focusing on bilateral relations and regional issues. He said that eliminating tensions and establishing relations between the two countries is beneficial to both countries and the Gulf region.