Iran advises Saudi Arabia not to play with fire

Iran advises Saudi Arabia not to play with fire
    Iran advises Saudi Arabia not to play with fire
    Iranian President Hassan Rohani on Wednesday sent a serious warning to Saudi Arabia, advising it not to play with fire, after an exacerbation of tensions between the two rival powers in the Middle East.

    The day before, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had accused Iran of "direct aggression" against his country after the interception of a missile fired at Riyadh by Yemeni Houthi rebels, backed by Tehran who denied any involvement.

    "You know the power and the place of Iran in the region. Some of the older ones have broken their teeth. You are nothing! "Rohani told Saudi leaders in a speech broadcast by state television.

    "The United States and its allies mobilized all their means against us and could not do anything," added the Iranian president, referring to the devastating war unleashed in 1980 by Iraq against the young Islamic Republic of Iran. Iran, with the support of Western and Arab countries. The conflict ended eight years later with a return to the status quo ante.

    Tehran and Riyadh broke off diplomatic ties in January 2016 after the Saudi embassy in Tehran ransacked in angry protest over the execution of a Shia cleric in Saudi Arabia.

    The two countries, major oil producers, support opposing camps in the main conflicts in the Middle East (Syria, Yemen, Iraq) and also oppose the situation in Lebanon and Bahrain.

    "Strategic error"

    "If you think that Iran is not your friend and that the United States and the Zionist regime are your friends, you make a strategic mistake and calculation," added the Iranian president, echoing recent Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Nethanyahu says that Iran's "threat" is contributing to an unprecedented rapprochement between the Jewish state and its Arab neighbors.

    Since the shooting of a Houthi rebel missile on Saturday night over Riyadh airport, Saudi Arabia and Iran have been engaged in a violent pass over Yemen.

    The Saudi authorities accuse Iran of being behind this shooting, which could, according to them, "amount to an act of war".

    Iran rejected the accusations and pleaded for appeasement, but the White House has taken up the case for Riyadh against Tehran. The European Union has called on all parties to calm down.

    In front of his ministers, Rohani urged Saudi Arabia, which has been leading an Arab coalition in Yemen in support of government forces since 2015, to stop bombing the Houthi-controlled areas and end the blockade. it imposes on this country.

    "Diplomacy" against "bombing"

    This renewed tension between Riyadh and Tehran comes at a time of uncertainty caused by the questioning by Washington of the international agreement on nuclear Iran concluded in 2015.

    Since taking office in January, US President Donald Trump has sought to reinvigorate the alliance between Washington and Riyadh, neglected by his predecessor Barack Obama.

    On his Twitter account, Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Wednesday called for a peaceful solution to Yemen rather than "creating new crises by bombing and threats."

    "There is no crisis that can not be solved by diplomacy. We have already proved it, "he added, referring to the 2015 nuclear deal.

    On the other hand, the Iranian conservative daily Kayhan was sentenced to a two-day suspension (Saturday and Sunday) for having titled Monday on the front page: "Missile fire from the Ansar Allah (Houthi rebels) against Riyadh, the next target will be Dubai ".

    According to the official Irna news agency, justice has ruled in favor of the Supreme Council for National Security, for whom this title is "contrary to the Islamic Republic's policy in the region".
    Wael Elyamani
    @Posted by
    writer and blogger, founder of CTV Egypt News .

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