Iran unsure about attending 13th OIC Summit in Istanbul

TEHRAN, Mar. 07 (MNA) – Iranian Deputy FM Rahmipour said Sun. if Saudis are intending to cause dispute and division in the 13th Islamic Summit in Istanbul, it will not be appropriate for Iran to participate.

Ebrahim Rahimpour, Deputy FM for Asia-Pacific Affairs, in a radio interview on Sunday, talked about Saudi Arabia’s ‘desperate and cowardly’ attempts against Iran’s participation in the Senior Officials Meeting preparatory to the 13th Islamic Summit, saying “Saudi Arabia was uncooperative in issuing visas for Iranian delegation and the meeting was held without Iran’s participation during which three unjust clauses were proposed against the Islamic Republic. We reject the proposed clauses and are consulting with our friends in the Muslim world about this issue.”

“Saudi Arabia’s move was against the international law and political etiquette,” he said. “This is from a country that is home to the OIC secretariat and as such must take fair and impartial stances.”

He went on to add, “regrettably, the Saudi regime does not observe any etiquette and their behavior has caused us to have doubts about attending the OIC Summit in Istanbul. Although Iran as one of the major countries in the Muslim world is keen on having an active participation in topics related to the region and the Islamic community.”

Rahimpour then referred to the recent visit of Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu to Tehran and his meetings with senior Iranian officials, saying “even Turkey is astonished over Saudi’s behavior on this issue.”

The Iranian diplomat stressed, “if Saudis are planning to cause dispute and division in the OIC Summit in Istanbul, then it will not be appropriate for us to attend the summit.”

“Foreign Minister Zarif is diligently trying to see what the final statement of the summit will be so that we will make a decision about our participation based on this information,” he added.

The 13th Summit of Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) will be held in Istanbul, Turkey, on April 10-15, 2016. A preparatory meeting to the Summit was held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, in February, in which Iran was unable to attend due to Saudi Arabia’s failure in issuing visas for the Iranian delegation.

Iran and Saudi Arabia had a fallout in their diplomatic relations on January 3 following demonstrations held in front of the Saudi embassy in Tehran and its consulate in the northeastern city of Mashhad by angry protesters censuring the Al Saud family for the execution of prominent Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr in Riyadh on January 2.

By Mehr News Agency