Saudi Arabia: We support the efforts of Griffiths … and the Houthis are obstructing the political process


Saudi Arabia: We support the efforts of Griffiths … and the Houthis are obstructing the political process

Faisal bin Farhan and Lavrov discussed in Moscow regional files and bilateral cooperation

Friday – 2 Jumada II 1442 AH – January 15, 2021 AD Issue No. [

Prince Faisal bin Farhan when he met Sergey Lavrov in Moscow yesterday (Reuters)

Moscow: Raed Jabr

Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan held a lengthy round of talks in Moscow yesterday, with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov, during which the two sides focused on bilateral relations and mechanisms to enhance coordination in regional and international files. The two ministers ’statements in a press conference that followed the talks reflected the degree of convergence of positions between the two countries regarding a wide number of files on the bilateral discussion agenda. This was reflected in the statements of the two ministers, who affirmed that Moscow and Riyadh “have identical or very close stances regarding most of the issues raised.”
According to Lavrov, the two ministers discussed in a closed session the regional situation “in detail”, especially in the Gulf region, the outcomes of the recent Al-Ula summit, and developments in the situation in Yemen, Syria and Libya. They also discussed the situation regarding Iran’s regional policies. In the context of bilateral relations, they discussed cooperation within the framework of the “OPEC +” agreement to serve the stability of oil markets in the world. They discussed cooperation mechanisms in the fight against the Corona epidemic.
Prince Faisal bin Farhan stressed, during the joint press conference, the importance that his country attaches to strengthening cooperation with Russia in various fields. He explained that “the discussions with the Russian side dealt with developing and strengthening relations between the two countries in various fields, the most important of which is investment and development, and the exchange of technical expertise, based on the historic visit of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz to Russia, and the visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to Saudi Arabia. ».
He added that the most important of these areas is cooperation between the two countries under the umbrella of “OPEC Plus”, which contributed to the stability of energy markets during the last difficult period in 2020, which were affected by the consequences of the “Corona” pandemic, and that this cooperation also contributed to protecting the global economic system. He pointed out that Saudi Arabia “is pushing towards achieving stability in the region, pointing to the Kingdom’s success in implementing (the Riyadh Agreement) in Yemen.”
The Saudi minister affirmed his support for reaching a political solution to the crisis in Yemen, represented by the implementation of the “Riyadh Agreement” and the formation of the new Yemeni government, which is an important step in opening the way to an integrated political solution to the crisis.
He also stressed support for the efforts of the UN envoy to reach a comprehensive ceasefire and start a comprehensive political process, again holding the Iranian-backed Houthi group responsible for disrupting political solutions, stressing the importance of continuing to support efforts aimed at resolving the Syrian crisis and restoring it to its stability, with the importance of removing Iranian interference in it, which obstructs real solutions that serve the Syrian people.
Prince Faisal announced that he discussed with his Russian counterpart “efforts aimed at settling the Syrian crisis, especially in the context of the need to advance the work of the Constitutional Committee.” Turning to the situation in Libya, he asserted that “the solution in Libya will only be Libyan, and we support a ceasefire in this country.”
The Saudi minister spoke in detail about “Iran’s negative role in destabilizing the region,” and said that he discussed this issue with Lavrov.
He stressed that “resolving tensions in the region is mainly related to Tehran’s ability to change its regional philosophy and adopt a policy that meets the interests of the Iranian people.” He added that Iran is directing its efforts towards supporting terrorist groups, with the aim of destabilizing the countries of the region, adding that the danger is not limited to the region but is withdrawn to pose a threat to global security. He explained that “the Houthi group’s activity, which is based on the use of booby-trapped boats to threaten traffic in the Red Sea, constitutes A direct threat to the security of international navigation, and is not limited to the countries of the region.
The Russian minister began the conversation, during the joint press conference, by praising the role of Saudi Arabia in strengthening cooperation with Russia and in developing mechanisms to settle regional problems. He particularly praised the agreements concluded at the Gulf Cooperation Council summit recently hosted by the Saudi city of Al-Ula, and said that, in addition to the efforts made by the State of Kuwait, Saudi Arabia cannot be ignored as a leading country in the Cooperation Council that played an exceptional role in the success of the summit, by hosting it and leading efforts Settlement ».
Lavrov described the Gulf Cooperation Council as an “important regional mechanism”, again welcoming the results of the recent summit, which culminated in the announcement of the restoration of the council’s unity.
He expressed his conviction that “the outcomes of this summit will contribute to creating the appropriate conditions for expanding the debate on the initiative to establish a collective security system in the Gulf region, especially taking into account the well-known Russian proposals.”
Lavrov affirmed Russia’s support for launching a normal dialogue and taking steps to enhance confidence between the Arab Gulf states and Iran. He pointed to the importance of “foreign parties refraining from preventing the achievement of this goal,” blaming the current US administration for obstructing progress in this path, and he said: “ It did everything in its power to prevent the launch of such a dialogue. ”
In return for this position, the Russian minister expressed his country’s understanding of the positions of Riyadh and the recent Arab countries towards Iran’s regional policies, and continued: “We discussed this in detail today (yesterday), and confirmed once again that we understand Saudi Arabia’s concerns, especially about the situation around Iran, and we understand that Saudi Arabia Concerned about what is happening about Iran’s missile program and Iran’s specific actions in some countries in the region (…), and we talked about that the agenda of the conference that we propose to convene to discuss the concept of collective security in the Gulf may include all these questions, in addition to the concerns of other parties, including Iran » .
The Russian minister pointed out the importance of “holding a dialogue conference whose aim would be to discuss all controversial files and provide a platform to restore confidence between Iran and Arab countries, and settle existing problems without outside interference,” noting that this is among the goals of the Russian concept of collective security in the Gulf. Lavrov stressed that “the most important thing is for such a dialogue to be based on true equality of rights, and for all external players to contribute to the parties concerned reaching understandings, instead of inciting them against each other.”
Lavrov revealed that Iranian Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, will visit Moscow during the current month, and said that he intends to “continue discussion with him in this regard, taking into account the results of the discussions that took place with Prince Faisal.”
Lavrov touched on the situation in Yemen, noting that Moscow welcomed the agreements reached recently, and directed criticism of “parties trying to obstruct the implementation of these agreements.”
Regarding the Syrian issue, Lavrov praised Riyadh’s efforts in pushing the path of settlement and the ongoing dialogues in Geneva within the framework of the Syrian Constitutional Committee, and said that Moscow and Riyadh have identical positions regarding the mechanisms for settling this file, noting, at the same time, that he discussed with his Saudi counterpart the need to restore Syria. Its seat at the Arab League. The Russian minister pointed to his conviction that “a number of points related to this issue should be settled.”


Yemen conflict


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