Nov. 8, 2022

Exclusive: Saudi Arabia halts talks with Iran through ‘special channels’

Iraq/Diplomacy

Speaking on the sidelines of the recent Arab League summit in Algeria, Iraq’s new President Abdul Latif Rashid stated that the "Iraqi mediation" between Iran and Saudi Arabia since last year is ongoing—despite the change in government in Baghdad. He also underscored that “Iraq does not interfere in the decisions of the two states in this regard." These remarks indicate that the stalled dialogue has not frozen. However, recent developments behind the scenes suggest a very different trajectory, Amwaj.media has learned.

Informed sources have indicated that Riyadh has told Tehran through “special channels” that the era of dialogue has come to a halt with the end of Mustafa Al-Kadhimi’s (2020-22) premiership, and with the return to power in Iraq of faces from “the old guard.”

Speaking on condition of anonymity, an Arab source involved in dealing with the Iranian-Saudi dialogue stated that President Rashid’s assertion “was for the media…nothing more.” According to the source, the talks have essentially been managed by Kadhimi “and a very limited number of members of his team,” without the involvement of other Iraqi state institutions. With Muhammad Shia’ Al-Sudani having entered office as prime minister, “The [Iraqi] mediation…is long gone,” the source elaborated, saying, “There are many difficulties…if not an impossibility that the talks will resume, and the same applies to other dialogues that Kadhimi facilitated between Tehran and a number of regional...

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Nour Ayoub
Nour Ayoub
Nour H. Ayoub is a journalist and documentary producer on Iraqi affairs. He writes for several ... Full Bio
فارسیPersian
فارسیPersian
عربيArabic
عربيArabic