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Iran to attend Jordan summit at foreign minister level

The file photo, taken on August 28, 2021, shows participants at the Baghdad International Conference for Cooperation and Participation.

The Iranian administration is planning to participate in a multilateral summit in Jordan at the level of foreign minister, amid speculations of talks between Tehran and Riyadh on the sidelines of the event.

Jordan is slated on Tuesday to host the regional summit aimed at easing tensions between neighboring countries.

The meeting, which is the second round of the Baghdad Conference for Cooperation and Partnership, is scheduled to be held on December 20 in the Jordanian capital of Amman.

Iran, Iraq, Turkey, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and France as well as two new guests — Bahrain and Oman — are slated to participate in the conference, the first round of which was held in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad in August 2021.

That summit focused on security, reconstruction, foreign investment, climate change and support for constructive dialogue in the region, as well as political, economic and security partnerships in Iraq.

The Jordanian army announced in a statement on its official website that as part of measures to secure the second Baghdad Cooperation summit, it plans to deploy its military forces from the Queen Alia International Airport in the capital Amman to the Dead Sea region.

“The army will deploy military forces and vehicles on the road from Queen Alia International Airport to the Dead Sea region, in preparation for the launch of the second edition of the Baghdad Cooperation and Partnership Conference, which will be held in the Kingdom,” the statement said.

Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein and French President Emmanuel Macron, whose countries are the main organizers of the summit, issued an invitation to both Turkey and Iran when they announced the conference’s date last week.

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian is due to leave Tehran for Amman on Monday.

While there have been speculations about a meeting between the Iranian and Saudi sides, the IRNA news agency reported on Sunday that no meeting has been scheduled for a meeting between the two.

Iraq has hosted five rounds of talks between Saudi Arabia and Iran at the level of intelligence and security heads since last April. Both Tehran and Riyadh have hinted at some headway in recent rounds of talks, although they remain divided over some contentious issues, mainly the devastating Saudi-led coalition’s war on Yemen.

Saudi Arabia severed diplomatic relations with Iran in January 2016 after Iranian protesters, enraged by the execution of prominent Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr Baqir al-Nimr by the Saudi regime, stormed its embassy in Tehran.

The kingdom then pursued a confrontational foreign policy toward the Islamic Republic, especially during the administration of former US president Donald Trump, with whom the Saudi rulers shared close ties.

Saudi Arabia appears to have recently changed its antagonistic course, showing willingness through diplomatic channels and third parties to mend fences with Tehran and resume bilateral relations.

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