Saudi's Prince Al Waleed pulls the plug on future Iranian investments

Published January 6th, 2016 - 01:02 GMT

Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal said that he has cancelled all plans of investing in Iran as tensions grow between Saudi Arabia and Iran over the kingdom’s execution of a Shia cleric.

In a message on Twitter, Prince Alwaleed said he “refused the Iranian ambassador’s meeting request, stopped all flynas flights to Iran and cancelled the study of all projects and investments in Iran.”

The billionaire’s Kingdom Holding Company holds a 34 per cent stake in budget carrier flynas.

His remarks come as Saudi Arabia cut all diplomatic ties with Iran following an attack on its embassy in Tehran on Saturday. The kingdom also cancelled air travel and commercial relations between the two nations.

Saudi’s embassy in Tehran and consulate in Mashhad were attacked by Iranian protesters after Saudi executed prominent Shia cleric Nimr Al Nimr and 46 others for terrorism offences on Saturday.

Several Gulf states have rallied with Saudi – Bahrain severed diplomatic ties with Iran and also halted air travel to and from the country. The United Arab Emirates and Kuwait have also recalled their ambassadors from Iran.

The United Nations Security Council and the United States have also condemned the attacks on the Saudi embassy.

Earlier this week UN secretary general Ban Ki Moon phoned the foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia and Iran to urge both countries to “avoid actions that could further exacerbate tensions after the recent Saudi executions, the attack on the Saudi embassy in Iran, and the rupture in diplomatic ties”.

He stressed the “importance of continued constructive engagement by them in the interest of the region and beyond”.

By Aarti Nagraj


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