Better Neighborly Ties a Priority

Better Neighborly  Ties a PriorityBetter Neighborly  Ties a Priority

Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Hossein Sadeqi said improving relations with the neighboring countries is a foreign policy priority for Tehran.     

He made the remarks in a meeting with Governor of Riyadh Province Turki bin Abdullah Al Saud in Riyadh on late Wednesday, in which the two officials discussed issues of mutual interest and reviewed the ways to expand Iran-Saudi Arabia relations in various fields.

Sadeqi highlighted the need to take advantage of the political and economic capacities in the two states for promotion of bilateral, regional, and international cooperation, IRNA reported.

The ambassador to Riyadh referred to the growing threat of terrorist activities in the region and said, "Extremist groups, such as the self-declared Islamic State (IS), are trying to show an unrealistic and violent image of Islam through killing innocent civilians."

The Saudi official welcomed the strategic policy of Tehran to improve relations with the neighboring states and said, "We attach great significance to Iran and believe that the reinforcement of ties between Iran and Saudi Arabia on the basis of mutual interests would be beneficial not only for the region, but it is also advantageous to the whole Muslim world."  

Since the last year’s election of President Hassan Rouhani, the foreign ministry has launched a campaign to boost relations with regional countries, especially the Persian Gulf Arab states.

After holding talks with his Saudi counterpart Saud al-Faisal in New York in September on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly meeting, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the meeting was a “new chapter” in the relations between Tehran and Riyadh which can help promote international peace and security.

“Both my Saudi counterpart and I believe that this meeting will be the first page of a new chapter in the relations between the two countries,” Zarif said.  

On September 23, President Rouhani said the relationship between Iran and Saudi Arabia deserves to be better.  

“Our relationship with Saudi Arabia ... deserves to be warmer,” Rouhani told a group of senior editors in New York ahead of the annual gathering of world leaders at the UN General Assembly. “Saudi Arabia’s positions are getting closer and closer to us.”