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Tehran: UK, Israel 'annoyed' by Iran-Saudi rapprochement

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak (L) welcomes his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu at Downing Street in London, Britain, on March 24, 2023. (Photo by Reuters)

Iran has roundly dismissed Israeli and British accusations against its nuclear program as well as its regional role, saying the two regimes are apparently angry at the recent rapprochement between the Islamic Republic and Saudi Arabia. 

The remarks by Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kan’ani on Saturday came after Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his British counterpart Rishi Sunak accused Iran of "destabilizing activity" in a meeting in London Friday.  

“It is one of the lasting ironies of history that the two regimes hurl accusations against the Islamic Republic of Iran, which is the anchor of stability in the region,” Kan'ani said. 

“One of these regimes relies on the usurpation of the territory of another nation in order to survive, is based upon everyday crimes and infanticide, and brazenly refuses to join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), while the war-mongering and seditious policies of the other can be observed anywhere throughout the region,” Kan’ani said.

“Given the dismal records of these two regimes and in light of positive developments taking shape in the region, it is not surprising that they are annoyed and disgruntled by the changes in the region and would seek to weaken and halt the trend,” he added.

Kan’ani was referring to a landmark agreement earlier this month between Iran and Saudi Arabia on restoration of bilateral relations after seven years. Experts maintain that the deal between Tehran and Riyadh could help end conflicts in the West Asia region.

“Iran reiterates that it attaches importance to enhancement of relations with its neighbors,” Kan'ani said.

The Islamic Republic also stresses that security in the region can be achieved only through the cooperation of regional countries, he added.

According to a statement from Netanyahu’s office, his meetings in London focused on the need to formulate a united front against Iran in order to stop its nuclear energy program. 

Downing Street said the meeting between Netanyahu and Sunak focused on the war in Ukraine, Iran's activities in the region and its nuclear program, as well as “deepening strategic cooperation in security, intelligence and economic fields” between the UK and Israel.

Kan'ani touched on "everyday crimes, gross violation of human rights and violations of international laws and regulations by the Zionist regime", reminding the international responsibility of the countries that support Israel.

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