Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah said on Tuesday that the Iran-backed Houthi militias clearly prefer a military solution in Yemen instead of dialogue and peace.
Addressing the Aspen Security Forum in the US, he said: “We had proposed a solution to the crisis in Yemen and offered a ceasefire, but the Houthis rejected them and have continued to target civilians in Saudi Arabia and Yemen.”
Saudi Arabia’s message is that they must agree to dialogue and be part of Yemen’s future, he added.
Turning to Iran, he accused it of threatening navigation in the Gulf and of being part of the crisis in Lebanon.
Iran is a negative actor in the region for supplying the Houthis with weapons and undermining marine navigation, he stated.
Before Tehran can be accepted as an effective member of the region, it must cease destabilizing it, urged Prince Faisal.
On the Iran nuclear deal, the FM noted that the greatest challenge lies in guaranteeing that an agreement would prevent Tehran from acquiring nuclear arms.
“We would support a nuclear deal with Iran if it guarantees that it never acquires such weapons,” he stressed.
On Saudi-American relations during the term of President Joe Biden, he said that “strong dialogue” was ongoing through all American administrations over various issues, including Iran, regional security and climate change.
On Abraham Accords peace deals between Arab countries and Israel, Prince Faisal noted that they have had a positive impact on the region.
“We must build on that” without neglecting the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, he added. Long-term regional stability cannot be secured as long as the conflict is not resolved.
On Qatar, he described relations with it as “very good”.
“We are working together on several issues and continue joint work in the Gulf Cooperation Council to achieve regional prosperity,” he remarked.