Iran reopened its embassy in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday, seven years after it was closed due to a diplomatic rift.

Iran PressMiddle East: The Islamic Republic of Iran and Saudi Arabia, with the mediation of China, agreed on March 10 to resume bilateral diplomatic relations after seven years.

The Saudi Al-Arabiya news channel reported that the embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Saudi Arabia was officially reopened on Tuesday afternoon.

Iranian and Saudi officials have been in close contact to follow up on the Beijing agreement. A little more than a week after the March 10 agreement, the Saudi king sent a letter to President Raisi in which he welcomed the agreement and invited Raisi to visit Riyadh. He also called for strong economic and regional cooperation.

Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic ties with Iran in 2016 in the wake of the Saudi execution of a Shiite cleric, along with 46 other Shia dissidents. Since April 2021, Tehran and Riyadh have been engaged in negotiations facilitated by Iraq and Oman to patch up their ties. These talks culminated in the Chinese-brokered deal.

Earlier on Monday, the Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani said Tehran’s embassy in Riyadh will be reopened on Tuesday, followed by the reopening of its consulate in Jeddah and its representative office with the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation a day later.

He said the embassy and the consulate had already started operating to facilitate pilgrimages for the Hajj and they will “be officially reopened in the presence of the two countries’ foreign ministry officials.”

The move comes in accordance with a China-brokered agreement that Iran and Saudi Arabia signed in Beijing on March 10, which set a deadline of two months to reopen embassies.


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