Iran Reopens Embassy in Saudi Arabia After Seven Years
TEHRAN (FNA)- Tehran officially reopened its embassy in Saudi capital Riyadh on Tuesday, seven years after it was closed due to a diplomatic rift between the two regional powers.
The development came months after the two regional powers agreed to end a diplomatic rift under a China-brokered deal.
A ceremony was held inside the embassy's compound with dozens of diplomats and officials attending the reopening of the diplomatic mission for the first time in seven years.
"We consider today an important day in the relations of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia," Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Alireza Bigdeli told a flag-raising ceremony.
"The cooperation between the countries is entering a new era," he added.
There is still no official confirmation on when the Saudi embassy in Tehran or the kingdom’s consulate in Mashhad will officially reopen or who its ambassador will be.
On March 10, after several days of intensive negotiations hosted by Beijing, Iran, and Saudi Arabia agreed to restore diplomatic relations and reopen embassies.
In a joint statement after signing the agreement, Tehran and Riyadh highlighted the need to respect each others’ national sovereignty and refrain from interfering in the internal affairs of one another.
Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Nasser Kana'ani has recently stated that President Seyed Ebrahim Rayeesi has invited Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud for an official visit.
President Rayeesi has extended an invitation to King Salman to visit Tehran, the spokesperson told reporters, noting that the Iranian president has offered to reciprocally host the Saudi king after receiving an invitation to visit Riyadh.
In an interview with Syria's official SANA news agency and Syria TV broadcast in early May, Rayeesi described Iran and Saudi Arabia as two powers in West Asia, and stated that Tehran-Riyadh detente will change regional equations.
Pointing to the rapprochement between Iran and Saudi Arabia, the president stressed that the restoration of relations between the two countries will tip the balance in the West Asia region.