Iran says ready to expand military cooperation with Saudi Arabia-Xinhua

Iran says ready to expand military cooperation with Saudi Arabia

Source: Xinhua

Editor: huaxia

2024-02-14 03:54:00

TEHRAN, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- Iranian Defense Minister Mohammad Reza Ashtiani said on Tuesday his ministry was ready to expand military and technical cooperation with Saudi Arabia, the semi-official Mehr news agency reported.

During a meeting with Saudi Arabia's Ambassador to Iran Abdullah bin Saud al-Anzi in the Iranian capital Tehran, Ashtiani highlighted areas in which the armed forces of the two countries could cooperate, including those of military, security, intelligence and technology.

He expressed confidence that such cooperation would benefit the two countries and improve security and stability in the region.

Regional countries had shared interests and common challenges, and it was important for them to co-exist peacefully and have a common understanding about the issue of security, said Ashtiani.

He emphasized that the regional and neighboring countries should be responsible for ensuring the collective security of the region and expressed Iran's full readiness for defense and security talks with Saudi Arabia and other Arab states in the region.

Ashtiani condemned Israel's killing of Palestinians, calling on Muslim states to take more decisive and coordinated actions and positions to stop Israeli attacks in Gaza.

The Saudi envoy, for his part, highlighted the necessity to promote bilateral cooperation in different fields, including the defense and technical ones.

He said Saudi Arabia and Iran were two friendly and brotherly countries, adding exchanging delegations and holding meetings between the two states' defense officials would strengthen relations between their defense ministries.

In March 2023, Saudi Arabia and Iran reached a groundbreaking agreement in Beijing to restore diplomatic relations and reopen their embassies and missions. The two countries formally declared in April of last year the resumption of diplomatic relations with immediate effect.

Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic ties with Iran in early 2016 in response to attacks on Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran. The attacks followed Saudi Arabia's execution of a Shiite cleric.