Saudi-Iran crisis widens as Kuwait recalls envoy

Smoke rises from Saudi Arabia's embassy during a demonstration in Tehran January 2, 2016. (Reuters)

The diplomatic crisis surrounding Saudi Arabia and Iran widened on Tuesday as Kuwait recalled its ambassador to Tehran and Bahrain severed air links in the face of growing international concern.

Joining Riyadh and its Arab allies in taking diplomatic action, Kuwait said it was withdrawing its envoy over a weekend attack on the Saudi embassy in Tehran.

Kuwait’s move came after the U.N. Security Council strongly condemned the attack by protesters angry over Saudi Arabia’s execution of a prominent Shiite cleric.

Tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran have erupted this week into a full-blown diplomatic crisis, sparking widespread worries of regional instability.

Washington and other Western powers have called for calm amid fears the dispute could raise sectarian tensions across the Middle East and derail efforts to resolve conflicts from Syria to Yemen.

The Security Council joined those calls late on Monday, issuing a statement urging all sides to “take steps to reduce tensions in the region”.

The statement by the 15-member council condemned “in the strongest terms” the attacks which saw protesters firebomb the Saudi embassy in Tehran and its consulate in Iran’s second-biggest city Mashhad. 

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:46 - GMT 06:46
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