Iranian President Hassan Rouhani says the spread of insecurity and instability in the Middle East will be highly detrimental to all regional countries.
In a meeting with Oman’s Foreign Minister Yusuf bin Alawi in Tehran on Sunday, the Iranian president said Tehran and Muscat shoulder a heavy responsibility vis-à-vis regional issues and must take steps to develop regional peace and stability.
He described as “very critical and worrying” the ongoing humanitarian situation in Yemen, stressing the importance of dispatching medicine and food to the war-ravaged Yemeni people and making efforts to put an end to their killing.
Rouhani expressed hope that Iran-Oman cooperation would help the Yemeni people and restore peace to the country.
Saudi Arabia has been incessantly pounding Yemen since March 2015 in an attempt to crush the popular Houthi Ansarullah movement and reinstate former president, Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, who is a staunch ally of the Riyadh regime.
About 14,000 people have been killed since the onset of Saudi Arabia’s military campaign against Yemen. Much of the Arabian Peninsula country’s infrastructure, including hospitals, schools and factories, has been reduced to rubble due to the war.
The United Nations says a record 22.2 million people are in need of food aid, including 8.4 million threatened by severe hunger.
Three years into the devastating Saudi-led war on Yemen, the UN health agency on Saturday voiced alarm over the rapid spread of a diphtheria outbreak in the country, saying some 1,300 Yemenis have contacted the highly infectious disease.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Rouhani said it is imperative to expand banking cooperation and facilitate the exchange of visits between the Iranian and Omani tradesmen in order to develop business and economic relations.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran is determined to boost all-out relations and cooperation with Oman,” the president added.
He also urged the two countries to implement agreements and joint projects in various sectors, particularly energy and transit, at the earliest.
Necessity for end to Yemen war
The Omani foreign minister, for his part, commended Iran’s role in improving regional peace and stability and urged an immediate end to the killing of the Yemeni people and the dispatch of humanitarian aid to them.
Bin Alawi said his country is keen to enjoy the highest level of cooperation with Iran in various fields and will take new steps to strengthen trade and cultural cooperation.
The Omani foreign minister arrived in Tehran Friday night on a two-day visit to hold talks about mutual and regional issues. On Saturday, he held separate meetings with Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani and the governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI), Valiollah Seif.
Bin Alawi also had a meeting with speaker of the Iranian parliament, Ali Larijani, during which the two sides discussed mutual relations, regional developments and other matters of mutual interest.