Iran MP calls on Saudi crown prince to resolve differences through dialogue

March 6, 2022 - 18:47

TEHRAN – Ebrahim Azizi, deputy chairman of the Iranian Parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Committee, urged Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman to pursue dialogue with neighbors.

In remarks to the Islamic Consultative Assembly News Agency (ICANA), Azizi said bin Salman’s remarks that Saudi Arabia needs peaceful coexistence with Iran is right.

“Mohammad bin Salman made right remarks but he was expected to make such remarks earlier,” Azizi said.

He added, “The Islamic Republic of Iran has repeatedly stated in recent years that the countries of the region should resolve their differences and problems through dialogue, not follow the path drawn by foreign countries.”

The lawmaker also called on the Saudi crown prince to demand the withdrawal of foreigners from the region. 

“If he believes in his statements, he should explicitly state that the foreigners should leave the region,” Azizi remarked.

According to Azizi, the Islamic Republic of Iran has good relations with its neighbors. “Accordingly, we will pursue negotiations with Saudi Arabia and other countries in the region. For example, we are witnessing four rounds of negotiations with a positive view between our country and Saudi Arabia,” the lawmaker stated. 

He added, “It seems that the Saudi crown prince should consider the process of bilateral talks with Iran, whether it is based on his recent remarks or not, and take steps to correct it.”

On Saturday, Iran’s top security official explained the goal of Iran’s negotiations with Saudi Arabia, reminding the kingdom that Israel is the biggest enemy of the Islamic and Arab worlds.

Ali Shamkhani, who is the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, made the remarks after the Saudi de facto leader said in a recent interview that Riyadh does not view Israel as an enemy, but a potential ally.

“Iran's active participation in bilateral talks with Saudi Arabia -hosted by Iraq- stems from the Islamic Republic’s principled strategy for [fostering] cooperation & amity with neighbors based on securing bilateral and regional interests. We should not forget that the Zionist regime is the biggest enemy of the Islamic and Arab worlds,” Shamkhani said on Twitter.

In addition to Persian, Shamkhani posted the tweet in other languages such as Arabic, Hebrew, and English. 

Saudi Arabian officials have said that they don’t mind establishing relations with Israel if the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is settled. Recently, Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan said that Israel's integration into the region would be beneficial not only for Israel but for the region as a whole. He made the remarks in an interview with the Israeli newspaper Maariv on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference.

The Saudi foreign minister added that his country will continue the peace process with Israel if the Palestinian issue is resolved fairly.

He noted that this situation would strengthen extremist movements in the region without resolving the deep-rooted problems of the Palestinian people and respecting their sovereignty. The Saudi foreign minister pointed out that the priority now is to find a solution so that the Israelis and Palestinians can sit together to pursue a peace process. He also stressed that this will make things easier for all countries that do not yet have relations with Israel.

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