Pakistan hopes to ease hostility between Iran, Saudis

Al-Monitor | i: Acting as a facilitator, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan recently paid a visit to Tehran and then Riyadh to try to defuse soaring tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Since the Sept. 14 cruise missile and drone attacks on Saudi Aramco oil installations, relations between the two close allies of Pakistan have been headed for a complete breakdown. Avoiding a war in the Gulf is Pakistan’s primary goal, especially since an Oct. 11 attack on the Iranian vessel Sabiti could become a trigger.

Khan’s arrival in Tehran just two days after the latter incident indicates the urgency of the matter. After meeting Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, Khan said at a news conference alongside Rouhani, “We recognize that it is a complex issue, but we feel it can be resolved through dialogue. What should never happen is a war between Saudi Arabia and Iran because this will not just affect this whole region — two brotherly countries will be affected — this will cause poverty in the world. Oil prices will go up.”

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