23:30 GMT23 July 2021
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    The breakdown in relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran could wreck peacemaking efforts to settle the Syrian civil war, the German foreign minister said Tuesday.

    BERLIN (Sputnik) — A diplomatic row erupted late Sunday after Saudi Arabia broke off ties with Iran over attacks on its embassy in Tehran following the execution of a prominent Shiite cleric by Saudis.

    "It is all about a new escalation in the relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran, which could undermine all the efforts of the past weeks on [reconciliation in] Syria," Frank-Walter Steinmeier told the Bild newspaper in an interview.

    According to Steinmeier, both Tehran and Riyadh should act in a more responsible manner and focus on more important regional issues, such as the Yemeni crisis and fight against Daesh militant group, which is outlawed in many countries, including Russia.

    International negotiations on the settlement of the Syrian crisis started in October. A second round of talks in the so-called Vienna format, with participation of both Iran and Saudi Arabia, took place in November, followed by talks in New York in December.

    On December 18, the UN Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution outlining a peace process for Syria following talks between 18 ministers of the International Syria Support Group.

    Saudi Arabia and Iran are backing the opposing sides in the Syria conflict, with Tehran supporting the Shiite government and Sunni-ruled Riyadh demanding that Syrian President Bashar Assad step down.

    Related:

    No Deal? Germany May Cancel Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia
    Saudi Defense Ministry Site Hacked After Shiite Cleric’s Execution
    Saudi-Iran Confrontation to Impede Syria Peace Process - Former US Diplomat
    Tags:
    tensions, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Germany
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