Iran, Saudi Arabia prepared to reopen embassies: official
Jalil Rahimi Jahanabadi, a member of the National Security and Foreign Policy committee in parliament, said in a tweet that Iran and Saudi Arabia are preparing to restore diplomatic relations, which were cut off in 2016.
Jahanabadi said relations between the regional rivals will have an important impact on easing regional tensions and “boosting the unity of the Islamic world”.
He called on Iran’s security and media institutions to be careful about activities by Israel, who he said may try to disrupt ties between Tehran and Riyadh.
“The relations of two important countries – Iran and Saudi Arabia – are being revived, and the embassies are getting ready to reopen,” he said in the tweet.
“This step will have important effects on reducing regional tensions and increasing unity in the Muslim world. Security organisations and media must beware of Zionists’ malice and extremists’ idiocy.”
Saudi Arabia and Iran, the region's Sunni and Shia Muslim powerhouses, launched direct talks late last year.
Global powers were trying to salvage a nuclear agreement with Tehran at the time and the UN was leading now-stalled efforts to end the Yemen war, where Saudi Arabia and Iran back opposing sides.
Recently, Iranian officials have been saying that a new round of Iran-Saudi negotiations will take place, but Riyadh has so far been silent.
One of the most contentious issues between Iran and Saudi Arabia has been Tehran’s support for Hezbollah in Lebanon.
Relations were cut between the two states after Iranian hardliners stormed the Saudi embassy in Tehran in 2016 to protest the execution of Shia Saudi cleric Nimr al-Nimr.