Iran’s embassy in Riyadh opens its doors after seven years

RIYADH – For the first time in seven years, Iran’s embassy in Saudi Arabia reopened its doors on Wednesday as the process of restoring full diplomatic ties between the two nations advanced.

While the Iranian Foreign Ministry announced that a technical group had reportedly arrived in the Kingdom to oversee the work diplomatic mission opened hours after it.

The action is the most recent outcome of a historic agreement mediated by China and signed in Beijing in March for the restoration of diplomatic ties between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

“In accordance with the implementation of the agreement between Iran and Saudi Arabia on the resumption of diplomatic activities… the Iranian technical delegation arrived in Riyadh at midday on Wednesday and was welcomed by Saudi officials,” said Nasser Kanani, a spokesperson for the Iranian Foreign Ministry.

The Iranian team will take the necessary measures to resume operations at the Iranian embassy in Riyadh, the general consulate in Jeddah, and the permanent representative of Iran to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.

Earlier, both countries’ foreign ministers had met in Beijing this month in more than seven years, after China brokered the agreement to restore relations between the two countries. 

Riyadh cut official relations with Tehran when Iranian protestors assaulted Saudi diplomatic offices in 2016 in response to Saudi Arabia’s execution of Shia Muslim cleric Nimr al-Nimr, one of several flashpoints between the two long-standing regional rivals.

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