The upcoming P5+1 meeting of Britain, China, France, Russia, U.S., and Germany to discuss Iran’s nuclear issue is causing discomfort in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states, specifically Saudi Arabia. While Iran presented its newest proposals to the West regarding how to make Tehran's nuclear program more transparent in order to lift Western sanctions, Saudi Arabia and the rest of the GCC are displeased they are left out of the negotiations and their interests are not represented. As a result, Saudi Arabia’s decided not to accept a rotating seat on the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) in protest.
Progress for the West, Setbacks for Saudi
The present composition of the UNSC has been unchanged since 1965, created in a different era with clearly altered security priorities around the globe and specifically in the MENA region.Dr. Theodore Karasik
Underscoring the change in tone, senior Iranian negotiator Abbas Araqchi and his U.S. counterpart Wendy Sherman recently met, marking the first direct nuclear talks between the Islamic republic and Washington since 2009. Iran and the P5+1 are expected to hold talks on a technical level before the next full meeting in Geneva in a few weeks, on November 7-8, 2013. Overall, Iran’s new tone, and new face, with a confidential powerpoint presentation in English, is adding to a growing sense of dismay in Saudi Arabia and the GCC.