KSA security non-negotiable

Adel al-Jubeir
Adel al-Jubeir

Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir attends a joint news conference in Riyadh, in this January 19, 2016 photo.

Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir has reiterated that the government would do whatever it takes to protect its citizens and their beliefs, and warned that Iran could not be trusted to help bring peace to the region.

Al-Jubeir made the comments in an interview with Reuters when asked about whether the Kingdom would have tried to develop nuclear weapons if Iran had been able to do so. He said the question was unreasonable.

“I don’t think it would be logical to expect us to discuss any such issue in public and I don’t think it would be reasonable to expect me to answer this question one way or another,” he said.

As for the lifting of sanctions on Iran after its nuclear agreement with global powers, he said it would lead to negative developments if Tehran used the money to fund “extremist activities.”

He said Saudi Arabia was “committed to two things that are non-negotiable— our beliefs and our security— and will take any measures needed to protect our people from any harm. I will leave it at that.”

Al-Jubeir reiterated the Kingdom’s stance toward Iran in his statements to CNN earlier. “I think that the Iranian foreign minister issued a lot of false information when he said that Saudi Arabia seriously seeks to resist this deal, and that I am against it,” said Al-Jubeir.

“My government’s position is to support any agreement that prevents Iran from acquiring nuclear capabilities, and that include strict and continuous inspection systems and penal provisions. President Obama confirmed to us that this is indeed the situation, and therefore we support the agreement.”

“Our concern is what Iran will do later, in terms of spending additional revenues accrued as a result of lifting some sanctions. We fear that it will use such revenues to support terrorism and create instability in the region, not to develop the country and improve the situation of the Iranian people, who are in dire need of development.”

“We also fear the nuclear deal will not deter Iran from pursuing a policy of interfering in the internal affairs of other countries, supporting terrorism, arming and training extremist militants, all to expand their influence in the region. We believe that is what Iran is doing in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Bahrain and other places.”

“It’s not a personal matter,” said Al-Jubeir. “It is related to my country and my region, and a state that is aggressive in its policies and does not mind using terrorism.”


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