The building of the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Riyadh (file photo)

The building of the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Riyadh

Riyadh Rejects Meeting Between Iranian, Saudi FMs In Foreseeable Future

5/27/2022

An official from the Saudi foreign ministry has rejected reports about a possible meeting between Saudi and Iranian foreign ministers, saying nothing has been scheduled for the foreseeable future.

The unnamed official told Reuters that some progress has been made in talks with Teheran but "it's not enough".

He made the comment in reaction to Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian who said earlier on Thursday that he may meet his Saudi counterpart soon in a third country.

"Iran must build confidence for future cooperation, and there are several issues that can be discussed with Tehran if it has the desire to de-escalate tensions in the region," the official said.

Amir-Abdollahian said at World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in the Swiss city of Davos that the Islamic Republic has made "minimal but good progress" in relations with Saudi Arabia.

The White House said on Thursday that two senior US officials – namely Brett McGurk, Biden's top White House adviser on the Middle East, and Amos Hochstein, the State Department's energy envoy -- visited Saudi Arabia this week for talks that included global energy supplies, Iran and other regional issues.

"I will confirm that Brett McGurk and Amos Hochstein were in the region to follow up on conversations on a range of issues including Iran’s destabilizing activities, ensuring stable global energy supplies and other regional issues," White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said.

Earlier in the week, Saudi Arabia's foreign minister reiterated that there had been some progress in talks with Iran but "not enough" and that the kingdom's hands remain outstretched to Tehran.

Sunni power Saudi Arabia and Shiite Iran, which are locked in proxy conflicts across the Middle East, have held five rounds of talks hosted by Baghdad.

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