Saudi crown prince receives Iranian foreign minister in Jeddah

Saudi crown prince receives Iranian foreign minister in Jeddah

Meeting in Jeddah comes as Amir-Abdollahian pays Saudi Arabia 1st official visit by a top Iranian diplomat in more than 7 years

By Mahmoud Barakat

ANKARA (AA) - Saudi Arabia's crown prince on Friday received Iran's foreign minister, who is paying his first visit to the country since they normalized bilateral ties, local media reported.

Mohammed bin Salman received Hossein Amir-Abdollahian in Jeddah, where they held a meeting on mutual ties and "future opportunities for cooperation between the two countries and ways to develop them, in addition to discussing developments in the situation on the regional and international arenas, and the efforts exerted towards them," according to the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

Amir-Abdollahian arrived on Thursday in Saudi Arabia for the first official trip to the kingdom by a top Iranian diplomat in more than seven years.

During a Thursday press conference with his Saudi counterpart Faisal bin Farhan in the capital Riyadh, Amir-Abdollahian underlined the need for Iran and Saudi Arabia "to advance their relations in various fields in line with common interests," according to Iran's official IRNA news agency.

He affirmed that the visit aims to "jointly pave the way for the continuation and stabilization of constructive ties between the two countries."

Riyadh and Tehran recently reopened embassies, based on an agreement reached last March in Beijing.

The two countries had severed diplomatic ties in January 2016 after the Saudi Embassy in Tehran and consulate in Mashhad were stormed by angry mobs following the execution of a Saudi Shia cleric.

The two neighbors launched talks to revive ties in April 2021, brokered by Iraq and Oman. A breakthrough was reached nearly two years later, courtesy of China.

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