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Iran’s top diplomat visits Saudi Arabia amid diplomatic thaw – DW – 08/17/2023

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Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian is in Saudi Arabia for an official visit, the Foreign Ministry in Tehran said.

It is the latest sign of improved relations between the two regional rivals since the resumption of diplomatic ties in March.

The one-day visit “is focusing on bilateral ties, regional and international issues.”

Amir-Abdollahian will be accompanied by Iran’s new ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Alireza Enayati, to “officially start his mission.”

Rapprochement strengthening

Shiite-dominated Iran and Sunni Muslim Saudi Arabia severed ties in 2016 after protests in Iran led to attacks on the Saudi Embassy in Tehran.

The protests were in response to Riyadh’s execution of Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr.

A Chinese-brokered deal announced in March saw the long-time rivals agreeing to reestablish relations.

Since then, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan visited Iran.

According to Iranian state media, military officials from Iran and Russia met in Moscow during a security conference on Wednesday.

Iran and Saudi Arabia have backed opposing sides in conflicts across the Middle East, including Yemen, Syria and Lebanon.

lo/sms (AFP, dpa, Reuters)

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