Saudi FM Denies Ties With Israel

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Gheit emphasized that the liberation of the region from violence and sectarianism is based on changing Iran's approach to the Arab world. It gave no details. As ISIS's self-proclaimed caliphate collapsed, Iran has taken an opportunity to establish closer ties with Baghdad, Beirut and Damascus. "We have not taken a decision to ask the Security Council to meet, but we are just briefing the council and maybe the next stage would be for us to meet and call for a Security Council meeting and submit a draft Arab resolution (against Iran)".

He reportedly alleged that "Iran's biggest arm in the region at the moment is the terrorist [Hizballah] arm".

Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim Al-Jaafari also did not attend the meeting.

Lebanese Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil did not attend the meeting, leaving permanent representative to the Arab League Antoine Azzam to represent the country.

Regional tensions have escalated in recent weeks between Riyadh and Tehran over Mr Hariri's resignation and after a ballistic missile was sacked at the kingdom by Houthi rebels in Yemen, who are also backed by Iran.

"Saudi Arabia has succeeded through pressure as well as extensive political and propagandistic hue and cry to have a statement that is full of lies and distortions be issued in the name of foreign ministers of the Arab League", Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Bahram Qassemi said Monday, according to Iran's semi-official Press TV.

The emergency Arab foreign ministers meeting was convened at the request of Saudi Arabia with support from the UAE, Bahrain, and Kuwait to discuss means of confronting Iranian intervention, Egypt's state news agency MENA said.

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Saudi Arabia and its allies accuse Iran of backing the Shiite Huthis, an allegation Tehran denies.

"Iran created agents in the region, such as the Houthi and Hezbollah militias, in total disregard for all global principles", said al-Jubeir.

The Arab League accused Hezballah of "supporting terrorism and extremist groups in Arab countries with advanced weapons and ballistic missiles", in its declaration. On the ground, however, Iran-backed militias, including Hezbollah, played a key role in defeating the jihadis in all three countries.

"We say it in clear terms that Iranian threats have exceeded all boundaries and are pushing the region toward the abyss", said Aboul-Gheit.

"The Lebanese Republic, in spite of our relations with it as a brotherly Arab nation, is under the total control of this terrorist party", Bahrain's Sheikh Ahmed said, referring to Hizbollah.

Saudi-Iranian tensions have escalated over Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri´s shock announcement on November 4 that he would resign, in a statement from Riyadh in which he cited Iran´s "grip" on his country and threats to his life.

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