Iran Protests at Riyadh’s Refusal to Issue Visa for Iranian Diplomats
Director-General for Political and International Security Affairs at the Iranian Foreign Ministry Hamid Baeidinejad said the country has objected Saudi Arabia’s “discriminatory” move to prevent an Iranian delegation from visiting the Arab country to attend an OIC meeting.
The Islamic Republic of Iran has raised its objection to relevant authorities regarding Saudi Arabia’s illegal and discriminatory move in refusing to issue visa for members of Iran’s delegation who wanted to attend a meeting of senior officials with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in the Saudi city of Jeddah, Baeidinejad said on Sunday.
“Any decision made in Jeddah without the participation of Iran’s political delegation would be invalid,” he noted.
Baeidinejad expressed the hope that Saudi Arabia would adopt a realistic approach, and prepare the grounds for the OIC to avoid addressing trivial issues, and focus on the Muslim world’s major problems including the issue of Palestine, terrorists, sectarianism, and common problems of the Islamic society (Ummah).
In the OIC meeting in Saudi Arabia, the draft documents and resolutions are planned to prepared for the upcoming OIC Leaders Summit due to be held in Turkey’s Istanbul.
Tensions ran high between Iran and Saudi Arabia in recent months mainly due to Riyadh’s execution of prominent Shiite cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, and a subsequent attack by outraged Iranian protesters on the Saudi embassy in Tehran, which resulted in the Arab country’s decision to sever its ties with the Islamic Republic.
On January 2, Saudi Arabia announced that it has executed Sheikh Nimr, among dozens of others. The execution ignited widespread international condemnation, from both political and religious figures.
The next day, furious demonstrators in the Iranian cities of Tehran and Mashhad stormed Saudi Arabia’s diplomatic buildings in protest at the execution of Sheikh Nimr.
Although Iranian officials criticized the embassy attack and police arrested dozens involved, Saudi Arabia cut off diplomatic relations with the Islamic Republic.