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Tuesday, January 25, 2022

‘Some misunderstandings’ between Iran, Saudi Arabia, UAE resolved: Tehran official


Officials from Tehran and Riyadh have been holding meetings since the end of the GCC crisis.

An Iranian general said that some “misunderstandings” between Iran and its regional rivals the UAE and Saudi Arabia have been resolved following meetings with officials, Tehran Times reported on Monday.

The Iranian media outlet stated that Chief of Staff of Iran’s Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Bagheri made the comments following a meeting with Oman’s Brigadier General Staff Abdulaziz bin Abdullah Al-Mandhari in Tehran.

This took place as part of plans to enhance military and international cooperation.

“We are ready to present our experiences to the Omani side regarding the fight against terrorism,” said Bagheri.

The Iranian general also said that his country has “great ties” with Qatar and Kuwait though confirmed there have been no calls with Bahrain.

“On regional issues, we have had meetings with officials of the Emirates and Saudi Arabia, and some misunderstandings have been cleared up. We also have good relations with Qatar and Kuwait,” he said.

Iran says progress made at Vienna nuclear talks

Meanwhile, Saudi and Iranian officials reportedly participated in a security dialogue in Jordan hosted by the Arab Institute for Security Studies, where the two sides discussed confidence-building measures.

While Jordan’s state news agency [Petra] reported on the meeting, a senior Iranian diplomat told Reuters that no official from Tehran attended the session.

“What was held in Amman was not an official meeting. But of course such meetings between academics are useful to give better understanding about realities between the two neighbours,” said the Iranian diplomat.

GCC reconciliation

While both Saudi Arabia and the UAE have had their own rivalries with Iran, the two Gulf states have appeared to start shifting their foreign policies.

This came after the 2017 GCC crisis was resolved earlier this year following the signing of the Al-Ula Declaration.

During the latest GCC crisis, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt launched an illegal land, air and sea blockade on Qatar over claims that is sponsors terrorism. Doha has vehemently denied those allegations.

The quartet claimed the move was due to Qatar’s relations with Iran and Turkey.

Since reconciling, Qatar has offered to mediate between Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Iran. On the other hand, it offered to mediate between Abu Dhabi, Tehran and Ankara.

Saudi Arabia and Iran have engaged in several rounds of talks over the past months, with positive statements being released from both sides.

Meanwhile, the UAE’s top national security adviser Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed Al Nahyan visited Iran last week to discuss bilateral ties between the two countries, a move that suggests a thaw in Tehran-Abu Dhabi relations.

Last month, UAE President’s diplomatic adviser Anwar Gargash said his country was “taking steps to de-escalate tensions with Iran as part of a policy choice towards diplomacy and away from confrontation”.

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