| 14 April 2024, Sunday |

Iraq to Resume Mediation between Saudi Arabia, Iran ahead of Jeddah Summit

Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi will resume his mediation between Saudi Arabia and Iran before the Gulf-Arab-American summit in Jeddah later this month, revealed an informed Iraqi source on Sunday.


The declaration of the restoration of relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran is expected to be announced in Baghdad, it told Asharq Al-Awsat.


The declaration will be made in the presence of Saudi and Iranian officials, Kadhimi and Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein, it added, without specifying if the announcement will be made before the Jeddah summit. The ties were severed in 2016.


Moreover, the source remarked that Kadhimi had made progress over several pending files between Saudi Arabia and Iran during his visits to Jeddah and Tehran last week.


This will help ease overall tensions in the region, he stressed.


Asked if Saudi officials will visit Baghdad before the Jeddah summit, the source said such a trip requires arrangements between Riyadh, Baghdad and Tehran.


Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian had announced from Damascus on Sunday that Tehran welcomes the restoration of relations with Riyadh, the reopening of embassies and the launch of political dialogue.


On reports that talks between Egypt, Jordan and Iran would be held in Baghdad, he said there are no direct negotiations with Egypt over restoring ties at the moment.


Efforts are underway however, to set them back on the right path as part of the joint cooperation between the two countries, he added.


Amirabdollahian made his remarks days after Iraqi FM Hussein revealed for the first time that Baghdad was sponsoring dialogue between Iran and Jordan, and Iran and Egypt.


Meanwhile, aide to Kadhimi, Dr. Hussein Allawi told Asharq Al-Awsat that the PM’s efforts aim to establish a period of regional stability, peace, cooperation and development.


Kadhimi kicked off the mediation in April 2021 and, in spite of the crises and media tensions, he has succeeded in holding four other rounds of dialogue between Saudi Arabia and Iran, Allawi went on to say.


“We can say that Iraq has managed in shifting Saudi-Iranian ties towards a period of understanding and the exchange of views over several regional issues,” he said.


They have set the path towards solutions and strategic initiatives to issues at hand, he added.


“Iraq is keen on establishing stability in the region because it is approaching economic changes through major projects tackling transportation, energy, electricity, food security, water shortages and climate change,” he continued.


The success of these projects demands constant partnership and cooperation between the countries of the region, he explained.

  • Asharq Al-Awsat