Iran is studying resumption of direct flights with Saudi Arabia

14 March 2023

Iran is studying the possibility of resuming direct air links with Saudi Arabia, which were halted in 2016 after the termination of diplomatic relations between the countries, Tasnim News Agency reported on Tuesday, citing Iranian Civil Aviation Organization spokesman Jafar Yazerla.

According to him, the regulator is negotiating with the Saudi side in order to obtain permission to fly to the kingdom. "After the permits are issued, air traffic between the countries will be restored," Tasnim quoted the official as saying.

On March 10, Iran and Saudi Arabia agreed to restore diplomatic relations and reopen embassies within two months. Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani and Saudi Arabia's Minister of State for National Security Musaid bin Mohammed al-Aiban negotiated for several days in Beijing, resulting in a trilateral statement. It states that Tehran and Riyadh are committed to the principles of sovereignty and non-interference in each other's internal affairs, and plan to resume cooperation in the fields of trade, economy, culture, science, and technology.

Relations between Riyadh and Tehran deteriorated in March 2015 with the start of the Saudi-led coalition military operation in Yemen against the Ansar Allah (Houthis) movement. In January 2016, after the Saudi embassy in Tehran and the consulate in Mashhad were attacked by crowds of protesters outraged by the execution in Riyadh of prominent Shiite preacher Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, the kingdom broke off diplomatic relations with Iran.



GSV "Russia - Islamic World"

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Based on materials from TASS