Saudi Foreign Minister affirms success of GCC and Arab summits

MAKKAH, Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr. Ibrahim bin Abdulaziz Al-Assaf has affirmed the success of Gulf and Arab summits in garnering support for Saudi and UAE position against the actions carried out by the Iranian-backed Houthi militia, the Saudi Press Agency, SPA, has reported.

Speaking at a joint press conference along with Secretary-General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit, and the Secretary-General of the GCC Abdullatif bin Rashid al-Zayani, following the conclusion of Gulf and Arab summits in Makkah, Dr. Al-Assaf said that the Iranian-backed Houthi militia were behind the attacks on two oil pumping stations in the Kingdom by using armed drones, and also sabotaged commercial vessels near the UAE's territorial waters.

Saudi Foreign Minister said that the GCC countries have expressed their desire for peace and cooperation with Iran, but "Iran must stop supporting terrorist acts in our countries and be a cooperative neighbour".

He added that the focus of these meetings was on the terrorist attacks on vessels near the UAE's territorial waters and the drone attacks on two pumping stations in Afif and Dawadmi governorates in Saudi Arabia, but "everyone knows that Iranian-backed terrorist Houthi militia has so far carried out 225 missiles and 155 drones attacks against the Kingdom".

These attacks were carried out in the past, the Minister added, noting that this time they appear to be aiming at a huge escalation in light of the current situation in the Gulf region as well as relations between Iran and the United States. "In our view, these attacks have gone beyond the goals of the previous attacks," Dr. Al-Assaf stated.

Answering a question about Qatar's participation in the two summits at the level of the prime minister, and if it is a beginning to solve the Gulf crisis, Dr. Al-Assaf explained that Qatar had participated in previous summits. He affirmed that Arab quartet's position is to find a solution to the causes of the crisis between these countries and Qatar, and there will be a solution "if Qatar returns to the right path".

The Foreign Minister stressed that the concern from Iran is not only about its support for the Houthi militia and other terrorist groups, including the terrorist Hezbollah in Lebanon, but also their interference in the internal affairs of other countries such as Bahrain.

The biggest concern, he added, is Iran's development of ballistic missiles and nuclear capabilities, pointing to the fact that this poses a direct threat to the Gulf states. He said that Iran's transgressions and support for the groups have exceeded Arab and neighbouring countries to Latin America and America "when they tried to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in Washington".

Minister Dr. Al-Assaf stressed that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's approach is clear, as it has repeatedly called for constructive and peaceful relations with Iran.

Source: Emirates News Agency