Saudi Arabia appeals for ‘calm’ after killing of Iranian general
Riyadh: Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister said on Monday the kingdom does not want to see further escalation of tensions in the region at a “very dangerous moment,” following Friday’s killing by a US drone of Iran’s most prominent military commander.
Prince Faisal bin Farhan told a news briefing in Riyadh, “We are very keen that the situation in the region doesn’t escalate any further. It’s certainly a very dangerous moment and we have to be conscious of the risks and dangers not just to the region but to wider global security.”
“We hope that all actors take all the steps necessary to prevent any further escalation and any provocation,” he added.
Prince Faisal spoke after a meeting of foreign ministers of Arab and African coastal states, including Egypt, Yemen and Djibouti, aimed at enhancing regional security, Saudi state media reported.
The killing of Soleimani, seen as the second most powerful man in Iran, is the most dramatic escalation yet in spiraling tensions between Washington and Tehran, prompting fears of a major conflict in the Middle East.
Earlier on yesterday, The military adviser to Iran’s supreme leader said the Islamic republic’s response to a United States strike that killed one of the country’s top commanders will be military.
In an exclusive interview with CNN in Tehran, the adviser — Maj. Gen. Hossein Dehghan — made the most specific and direct threat yet by a senior Iranian official following the killing of Gen. Qasem Soleimani in a US drone strike in Baghdad.
Dehghan said Iran would retaliate directly against US “military sites.”
Dehghan is a former defense minister and is now the main military adviser to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. He told CNN that reprisals would come from Iran itself, not its allied militia in the region.
“It might be argued that there could be proxy operations. We can say America, Mr. Trump, has taken action directly against us — so we take direct action against America.”
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