Riyadh-Baghdad ties improving; Saudi Arabia lets Iraq send ambassador to Jeddah
The Saudi Kingdom, which has no diplomatic relations with Iraq, is to let Baghdad send an ambassador to the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) in Jeddah in a new sign of improving ties, a newspaper said Tuesday.
An Arab diplomatic source told Al-Hayat, "the Saudi foreign affairs ministry has given its agreement" to an Iraqi request via the OIC to appoint an ambassador to the 57-member Islamic body based in Jeddah.
The new envoy, who was likely to occupy the Iraqi consulate offices in Jeddah, which have been closed since relations were severed in February 1991 during the Gulf war, was also expected to handle future contacts with Riyadh, the daily added.
Riyadh and Baghdad have set aside years of bitterness in the aftermath of Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait and began a rapprochement at a recent Arab summit.
Opposing United States threats to strike militarily against Iraq, Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah and Iraqi number two Ezzat Ibrahim embraced publicly during the summit, which took place in Beirut.
It should be noted that Iran appointed an ambassador to the OIC after relations were broken off with Saudi Arabia in 1988. (Albawaba.com)