Six years after snapping their diplomatic ties, arch-foes Iran and Saudi Arabia are slowly moving toward rapprochement and preparing to reopen embassies, according to a senior Iranian lawmaker. Jalil Rahimi Jahanabadi, a member of the Iranian Parliament’s national security and foreign policy commission, in a Twitter post on Saturday, said the two countries are on course to restore their fractured ties.
The two neighbors fell out in January 2016 after attacks on two Saudi diplomatic missions in Tehran and Mashhad, triggered by the execution of a prominent Shia cleric, Sheikh Baqir Nimr, in Saudi Arabia. While Iranian officials have noted progress in the marathon talks, Jahanabadi’s latest remarks suggest that a breakthrough could be just around the corner.
The senior reformist lawmaker, who previously headed the parliament’s judicial and legal committee, said diplomatic ties between the two countries are being “revived,” with preparations afoot to “open the embassies.” He said the rapprochement between Tehran and Riyadh could contribute to “reducing regional tensions and increasing the cohesion of the Muslim world.” Jahanabadi, however, warned the country’s security agencies and media about what he called “vicious activities of Zionists and imprudent acts of radicals” to thwart efforts being made to restore relations with Riyadh.