Saudis Seeking to Dent Iran’s Security

Saudis Seeking to Dent Iran’s Security Saudis Seeking to Dent Iran’s Security

A senior official said Saudi Arabia has intensified its efforts to undermine Iran's national security in recent months.

Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, a foreign policy advisor to Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani and former deputy foreign minister, made the statement during a talk on state TV on Sunday.

He said although Saudis had taken measures to threaten Iran's security in previous years, under the new ruler King Salman, who ascended to the throne in January 2015, Saudi Arabia has been using all its "destructive power" to threaten Iran's security.

"This Saudi Arabia is not the Saudi Arabia of 10 years ago. Now, they face many challenges and have suffered serious failures," he said.

Amir-Abdollahian said there have been radical changes in the Saudi behavior in West Asia under the new king, notable examples of which are its aggressive policy against Tehran and "the strategic mistake" of starting its military campaign in Yemen in March 2015.

He said these changes are the Saudi rulers' efforts to cap the infighting in the system.

"Inside the Saudi establishment, there is a real crisis and the attack on Yemen is an effort to conceal these divisions," he said, adding that they were seeking to put their country in a war situation, so internal divisions do not come to the surface.

***Russia's Syria Policy Unchanged

Amir-Abdollahian touched on the Syrian crisis, saying the US has redoubled efforts to "deceive" Russia into agreeing with the removal of President Bashar al-Assad from power in Syria, to weaken the resistance front against Israel and destabilize the region.

The diplomat said that with the US presidential election in sight, the US administration is in a hurry to gain what it could not achieve by supporting militants fighting to topple the Syrian government for five years.

"Americans are exerting increased pressure on Russia to convince them to accept the removal of Assad," he said, adding that the US efforts have not produced any results yet and Russia's strategy on Syria has not changed.

The advisor said Iran has repeatedly told western states and other influential players that no outside power should try to impose its will on the Syrian people who alone should decide their country's political future.

US Secretary of State John Kerry held marathon talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Moscow last month.

Kerry said two weeks ago that talks with Russia about cooperation in Syria were "making progress", adding that he hopes to announce the outcome this month.