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Arab foreign ministers accuse Iran of undermining regional security

Arab foreign ministers accuse Iran of undermining regional security

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Date: 11 January 2016 01:17

Arab foreign ministers condemned attacks on Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran and warned on Sunday that the country would face wider opposition if it continued its "interference" in the internal affairs of Arab states, Reuters reported.

Tensions between the Sunni Muslim kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Shi'ite Muslim Iran have escalated since Saudi authorities executed Shi'ite cleric Nimr al-Nimr on Jan. 2, triggering outrage among Shi'ites across the Middle East.

In response, Iranian protesters stormed the Saudi embassy in Tehran and its consulate in Mashhad, prompting Riyadh to sever relations. Tehran then cut all commercial ties with Riyadh, and banned pilgrims from traveling to Mecca.

Other Arab countries have recalled envoys to Iran and the United Arab Emirates downgraded relations in solidarity with Saudi Arabia.

"Iran has to decide what kind of neighbor it wants to be: a good neighbor or a chaotic neighbor and so far it behaves like the latter," UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed al-Nahyan said following an emergency Arab League meeting in Cairo.

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said cutting commercial and diplomatic ties was a first step, and that his country would discuss potential further actions against Iran with its regional and international allies. He gave no further details.

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