Thawing ties: Three Iranian diplomats in Saudi Arabia to take up OIC posts

Three Iranian diplomats have arrived in Saudi Arabia to take up posts at the headquarters of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in the kingdom, Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman says.

“Three Iranian diplomats have arrived in Jeddah to start their work at the OIC,” Saeed Khatibzadeh said at a weekly press conference on Monday.

Khatibzadeh described the latest development as “a good prelude for the two sides to visit their embassies.”

“Iran has always expressed its readiness to open its embassy in Saudi Arabia,” he added.

The spokesman also said paying attention to one’s words and deeds is a prelude to a détente between Tehran and Riyadh, which, “God willing, our friends in Saudi Arabia are increasingly cognizant of.”

On Saturday, a member of the Iranian Parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Committee said Iran and Saudi Arabia are preparing to reopen embassies after five years of severed ties.

The restoration of ties between the two important countries of Iran and Saudi Arabia would play a substantial role in easing tensions in the region, Jalil Rahimi Jahanabadi said in a tweet.

Saudi Arabia severed diplomatic relations with Iran in January 2016 after Iranian protesters, enraged by the Saudi execution of prominent Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr Baqir al-Nimr, stormed its embassy in Tehran.

For years, the kingdom pursued a confrontational foreign policy toward the Islamic Republic, but since last year, the kingdom appears to have changed tack.

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