TEHRAN, April 17 (Xinhua) -- An Iranian diplomat said that based on the Tehran-Riyadh agreement on the normalization of bilateral ties, embassies are expected to reopen in the two countries by May 9.
Alireza Enayati, a director general of the Iranian Foreign Ministry, made the remarks in an interview published on Monday with the official news agency IRNA, commenting on steps taken by the two countries to reopen their diplomatic missions.
He noted that to this end, Iran has been hosting a technical team from Saudi Arabia since April 8, saying after visiting the premises of the country's embassy in Tehran, the Saudi delegation, on Friday, arrived in Mashhad to visit the building of Saudi Arabia's consulate general in the northeastern Iranian city.
Enayati added another Saudi delegation is also scheduled to visit Iran to discuss the reopening of the diplomatic missions.
He said, within the same framework, Iran on Wednesday sent two delegations to Saudi Arabia, of which one has been stationed in Riyadh to prepare for the reopening of the Iranian embassy and the other in Jeddah to reactivate the country's consulate general and representative office to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).
Enayati noted that Iran has started its activities of repairing the buildings of its embassy and consulate general in Saudi Arabia to prepare for reopening.
Iran and Saudi Arabia reached a deal in China on March 10 to resume diplomatic relations and reopen embassies and missions in the two countries within two months.
In a meeting in Beijing on April 6, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and his Saudi counterpart Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud signed a joint statement announcing the practical resumption of official diplomatic relations.
Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic ties with Iran in 2016 in response to the attacks on Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran after the kingdom executed a Shiite cleric. ■