Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister said that this is consistent with their calls for “tougher action” on Iran.
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir in Jeddah, 25 August 2016. Photo Credit: U.S. Department of State
As Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman prepares for a summit with US President Donald Trump, Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister called the Iran deal a “flawed agreement” while speaking to reporters in Washington. This comes after increasingly tougher rhetoric by both countries as part of an attempt to push back Iran’s influence in the region.
Saudi Arabia and Iran have been continuously in conflict over Iran’s support for Hezbollah, Assad and the Yemeni Houthis. Iran continually denies interference in the region’s affairs, stating that any action it takes is to defend its own security.
The Saudi call for tougher action comes in the wake of Trump’s repeated calls for a new Iranian deal and his administration’s $350 billion commitment to a new American-Saudi arms deal. As the Crown Prince arrives in Washington, he plans to meet with Congressional leaders who have raised concerns over his country’s involvement in Yemen and the humanitarian consequences it has caused. When Trump and the Crown Prince meet on Tuesday, the issue of Iran’s involvement in the region and the continuing military and economic partnership between the two countries will top the agenda.
From his side, Trump issued Nowruz greetings to the Iranian people, congratulating them on the arrival of spring but attacking their government. Trump stated that Iran is led by “rulers serve themselves instead of serving the people.” He used the opportunity to ask all the participants of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal to “fix the terrible flaws” in the deal or he would refuse to extend U.S. sanctions relief on Iran.
A statement on the visit was tweeted by the Saudi Foreign Minister today:
The Saudi-U.S. historic and strategic relations that go back to 8 decades are long bound by mutual respect and common interests; as well as coordination and continuous consultations on regional and international issues #CrownPrinceinUSA
— عادل بن أحمد الجبير (@AdelAljubeir) March 19, 2018