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Ties with neighbors top priority for Iran: Diplomat

Ties with neighbors top priority for Iran: Diplomat

Iran’s Ambassador to Riyadh Hossein Sadeqi says the enhancement of relations with neighboring countries, including Saudi Arabia, is a top priority of the Islamic Republic’s foreign policy.

In a Wednesday meeting with Prince Turki bin Abdullah Al Saud, the emir of the Saudi province of Riyadh, Sadeqi underlined the necessity of adopting practical measures to further expand bilateral ties between the two countries in various fields.

The Iranian envoy stressed the need to tap into all existing economic and political potentials between Tehran and Riyadh to expand bilateral, regional and international cooperation.

The Saudi official, for his part, said his country attaches special importance to the relations with the Islamic Republic, adding that the improvement of bilateral ties would benefit the entire region and the Muslim world as well.

Earlier this year, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani said cooperation between Iran and Saudi Arabia will be vital for regional security.

“The Iranian administration seeks to maintain and expand friendly and brotherly ties with Muslim countries, particularly its neighbors, and, in this midst, Saudi Arabia has a unique and special position,” Rouhani said in a meeting with Saudi Ambassador to Tehran Abdulrahman bin Gharman Al-Shihri.

Iran and Saudi Arabia are divided on a number of regional issues, such as the situation in Syria and Bahrain.

Tehran has been critical of Riyadh’s support for the heavy-handed crackdown of the Bahraini regime on peaceful protesters.

Riyadh also supports militants fighting the Syrian government, while Iran stresses the importance of resolving the crisis in Syria through political means.