Kerry: Saudi Arabia would have ‘influence’ on Security Council

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U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Monday that Saudi Arabia would have had more influence taking a seat at the U.N. Security Council.

Kerry held talks in Paris with Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal discussing Saudi Arabia’s rejection of a U.N. Security Council seat, Agence France-Presse reported.

“Secretary Kerry conveyed that while it is Saudi Arabia's decision to make, the U.S. values Saudi Arabia's leadership in the region and the international community, and a seat on the UNSC affords member states the opportunity to engage directly on these issues,” a senior State Department official told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Kerry and Faisal have also discussed the Syrian conflict and Saudi Arabia’s concerns over signs of a tentative reconciliation between the U.S. and Iran, in addition to other regional questions during a two-hour lunch in Paris, where Kerry was meeting with Arab League officials, AFP reported.

On Friday, Saudi Arabia turned down a two-year seat at the Security Council citing the body’s “double standards” and its inaction over Syria’s conflict.

While the Saudi stance won praise from its Gulf Arab allies and Egypt, Arab states at the United Nations urged Riyadh on Saturday to reconsider its decision.

(With AFP)

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