As the war of words between Riyadh and Tehran continues, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani accused the kingdom of meddling in the affairs of other countries and abusing the Yemeni people. In addition, he said that Saudi Arabia made a “strategic mistake” when it chose to consider the US and Israel friends.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani harshly criticized Saudi Arabia Wednesday morning and accused the kingdom of interfering in the affairs of other countries in the Middle East and abusing the Yemeni people. Rouhani also said that Saudi Arabia made a “strategic mistake” by choosing to recognize the US and Israel as friends while considering Tehran an enemy, according to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ official news agency.

Rouhani made these statements during a government meeting in Tehran. According to the Iranian president, Iran’s history proves that the country’s only intentions are for the good of the region’s inhabitants. He also said that the Iranians and Saudis once enjoyed a friendly relationship.

The Iranian president then justified last week’s Houthi missile launch that targeted Riyadh, saying that it was an appropriate response to the Saudi aggression: “How should the Yemeni people protest against the bombardment of their country. You [Saudi Arabia] aren’t allowing the citizens of Yemen to receive medicine, food and aid. Is this your logical and Islamic right?”

Meanwhile, the White House announced that it condemns the missile launch toward Riyadh and accused the IRGC of ordering the Houthi rebels to attack Saudi Arabia. “Houthi missile attacks against Saudi Arabia, enabled by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, threaten regional security and undermine UN efforts to negotiate an end to the conflict,” the White House stated. “These missile systems were not present in Yemen before the conflict, and we call upon the United Nations to conduct a thorough examination of evidence that the Iranian regime is perpetuating the war in Yemen to advance its regional ambitions.”