“Kingdom stresses importance of keeping Middle East free from weapons of mass destruction”
Guardian of the two holy mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia told the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday that his kingdom supports efforts to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons, as world leaders are preparing to resume talks with Tehran to restore a 2015 nuclear pact.
“The Kingdom stresses the importance of keeping the Middle East free from weapons of mass destruction, on this basis, we support international efforts to prevent Iran from having nuclear weapons,” he said. said in a pre-recorded video at the annual rally.
Iran and Saudi Arabia have been rivals for years. They severed diplomatic ties in 2016, but held talks this year to reduce tensions.
“Iran is a neighboring country, and we hope that our first talks with it will lead to concrete results to strengthen confidence (…) based on (…) respect for sovereignty and non-interference in internal affairs, “said King Salman.
His remarks followed a call by Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi to resume nuclear talks with world powers that would lead to the lifting of US sanctions.
The Saudi foreign minister met his Iranian counterpart at the General Assembly on Tuesday, according to the semi-official Iranian news agency Mehr.
peace in Yemen
In his speech, King Salman said Yemen’s Houthis reject peaceful initiatives to end the war and that Saudi Arabia will defend itself against ballistic missiles and armed drones.
The 85-year-old ruler said the kingdom had made great strides in the past five years since his heir Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman launched an ambitious plan to diversify the economy away from dependence on oil and d ‘other changes.
He also referred to the fight against extremism by Saudi Arabia.
“The kingdom continues to fight against extremist thinking, based on hatred, and by controlling terrorist organizations and sectarian militias that destroy humanity and nations,” he said.