Restoring Relations: Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador Arrives in Tehran as Diplomatic Ties Resume with Iran
Saudi Arabia and Iran Restore Diplomatic Relations After Seven-Year Hiatus
Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Iran arrived in Tehran on Tuesday, while his counterpart arrived in Riyadh, signaling the restoration of relations between the two rival Gulf states after a seven-year break.
Reopening of Embassies
Iran and Saudi Arabia have agreed to resume diplomatic relations and reopen their embassies following a deal brokered by China in March.
In 2016, Riyadh and Tehran severed their relations after Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran were attacked during protests against the execution of Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr by Saudi Arabia.
Ambassador Abdullah Al-Enezi, upon his arrival in Tehran, expressed the Saudi leadership’s commitment to strengthening relations, increasing communication, and expanding the relationship’s scope.
Iran’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Ali Reza Enayati, also arrived in Riyadh on Tuesday and was warmly received by Foreign Ministry officials and embassy staff.
Saudi Arabia’s embassy in Tehran resumed operations last month, while Iran celebrated the reopening of its embassy in Riyadh with a flag raising ceremony in June.
Progress in Bilateral Relations
During his visit to Saudi Arabia, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian emphasized the importance of unity and dialogue, stating that bilateral relations were progressing in the right direction.
Shift in Regional Dynamics
For years, Iran and Saudi Arabia have supported opposing sides in conflicts across the Middle East. However, since the March agreement, Saudi Arabia has restored its relations with Syria, an ally of Iran, and has intensified efforts for peace in Yemen, where it led a military coalition against Iranian-backed rebel forces.