The Islamic Republic of Iran has addressed a new diplomatic gesture toward the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia intended to thaw the icy ties between the two regional giants.
In remarks published on the front page of London-based Saudi newspaper, Ash-Sharq Al-Awsat on Wednesday, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said Tehran is looking forward to restore the ties with the Kingdom on more solid basis, indicating that “there have been no actual problems in the bilateral relations between the two sides.” Salehi, in the remarks to the Saudi mass-circulation, made on sidelines of a ministerial conference of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) in Kazakhstan, said the “misunderstanding” between Riyadh and Tehran was result of the lack of face-to-face meetings between officials of the two countries.
Recent regional events constituted some of the causes that strained the normal ties between the Republic and the Kingdom, said Salehi, whose remarks were highlighted by the widely-read Saudi newspaper.
Salehi added, “We hope that, when circumstances turn adequate, to sit together and resolve the problems, and hold candid conversations, because I believe that the misunderstanding resulted from the lack of holding bilateral meetings.
“Such misunderstanding wouldn’t have existed had we held bilateral meetings, and I am quite optimistic because we have maintained good relations with Saudi Arabia since a long time ago and we hope that these ties turn stronger in the future.” Meanwhile, Ash-Sharq Al-Awsat said that there was an official declaration in the Kazakh capital, changing the name of the Islamic organization from the OIC to the “Organization of Islamic Cooperation.” The organization new logo will depict the Earth, ornamented in the center with the Holy Kaaba, and surrounded by the Crescent.
Moreover, the newspaper published excerpts of a statement, addressed by Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev at the inauguration session of the Islamic organization, on Tuesday, calling for greater joint efforts to achieve development and progress in the Islamic world. He also attributed the political turbulence in the Arab and Islamic countries to diverse social and economic problems.
Kuwait News Agency