Iran and Saudi Arabia have reached an agreement in the Chinese capital of Beijing to restore diplomatic relations and reopen embassies and missions, seven years after their ties broke down over various issues.
The deal was reached on Friday after several days of intense negotiations between Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) secretary Ali Shamkhani and his Saudi counterpart in Beijing. It was officially announced in a joint statement by Iran, Saudi Arabia and China.
The statement was signed by Shakhani, Musaid Al Aiban, Saudi Arabia’s national security adviser, and Wang Yi, director of the Chinese Communist Party’s Office of the Central Commission for Foreign Affairs.
Shamkhani has been engaged in intensive talks with his Saudi counterpart in Beijing since Monday to find a final solution to the issues between Tehran and Riyadh. The negotiations followed a meeting between Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in Beijing last month.
“As a result of the talks, the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have agreed to resume diplomatic relations and reopen embassies and missions within two months,” the joint statement said.
He added that the foreign ministers of Iran and Saudi Arabia will meet to “implement this decision and make the necessary arrangements for the exchange of ambassadors.”
According to the statement, Iran and Saudi Arabia stressed the need to respect each other’s national sovereignty and refrain from interfering in each other’s internal affairs. They agreed to implement a security cooperation agreement signed in April 2001 and another agreement reached in May 1998 to promote economic, commercial, investment, technical, scientific, cultural, sports and youth cooperation.
Iran, Saudi Arabia and China expressed their firm determination to exert their utmost efforts to promote regional and international peace and security, he stressed.
The statement further explained that the Iranian and Saudi Arabian delegations, led by Shamkhani and Aiban, held several meetings in the past five days following Chinese President Xi Jinping’s endorsement of expanding ties between Tehran and Riyadh based on the principle of good neighborliness and his efforts to organize meetings between senior Iranian and Saudi officials.
The talks between Shamkhani and Aiban also took place as a result of Tehran’s and Riyadh’s enthusiasm to resolve differences through dialogue and diplomacy based on brotherly ties and adherence by both parties to the principles of the United Nations Charter. and the Organization for Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Charter and international norms and principles, he added.
Saudi Arabia severed diplomatic relations with Iran in January 2016 after Iranian protesters, angered by the Saudi government’s execution of prominent Shiite cleric Sheikh Nimr Baqir al-Nimr, stormed their embassy in Tehran.
The two sides had held five rounds of negotiations in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad since April 2021.
In their joint statement, Iran and Saudi Arabia also thanked Iraq and Oman for organizing the talks between the two sides in 2021 and 2022, as well as the leadership and the government of the People’s Republic of China for organizing and supporting the talks held there. country.
In phone call, Shamkhani thanks Iraq for hosting talks
Before the official announcement on the restoration of ties between Iran and Saudi Arabia, Shamkhani had a telephone conversation with Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani.
The senior Iranian security official praised Iraq’s great efforts to organize five rounds of talks between Tehran and Riyadh.
He also praised Baghdad’s “very valuable” offers to prepare the ground for the new deal between Tehran and Riyadh.
Speaking after signing the deal, Shamkhani said the negotiations between the two countries were “frank, transparent, comprehensive.”
“Clarifying misunderstandings and looking to the future in Tehran-Riyadh relations will definitely lead to the development of regional stability and security and increased cooperation between the Persian Gulf countries and the Islamic world to manage existing challenges,” said. saying.