'Normal’ countries don’t attack neighbors, Zarif tells S. Arabia 

January 24, 2020 - 19:40

TEHRAN – In an open reference to Saudi Arabia which has been striking neighboring Yemen since March 2015, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif wrote on his Twitter account on Friday that “normal countries don’t attack their neighbors, cause a humanitarian crisis, and refuse to talk.” 

The tweet by Zarif came after Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Prince Faisal bin Farhan told Reuters on Wednesday that his kingdom was "open to the idea of holding a dialogue" with the Islamic Republic. 

Speaking at the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the royal said "that dialogue would have to start with the acceptance by Iran that they have to change their behavior."

Specifically, he said, Tehran would have to agree that it "cannot further its regional agenda through violence."

Zarif, while welcoming possible dialogue with the Saudi kingdom, said, “We don’t set preconditions for dialog.”

Iran has been a vocal critic of the Saudi-led war on Yemen and been insisting on dialogue to the end the conflict. 

The United Nations has said the suffering caused by the war on Yemen is the “biggest humanitarian disaster” in today’s world. 

In remarks on Thursday, Zarif also voiced Tehran’s readiness to do its best to participate in any plan which will result in guaranteeing interests of regional nations. 

“Iran is still interested in continuing dialogue with its neighbors. We announced our preparedness to partake in any synergistic measure to secure the region’s interests,” Zarif wrote in his official Twitter account in Arabic language.

“We welcome any step that can return hope to people and can grant (the people) stability and prosperity,” the top diplomat added.