GCC protests ‘contradictory’ signals from Iran

GCC protests ‘contradictory’ signals from Iran
Updated 22 July 2015

GCC protests ‘contradictory’ signals from Iran

GCC protests ‘contradictory’ signals from Iran

RIYADH/DUBAI: The six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) on Monday protested at what it termed “contradictory” signals coming from Iran since its nuclear accord struck with world powers last week.
This followed a move by Bahrain to summon a senior Iranian diplomat to complain about Iran’s “flagrant and unacceptable interference” in its internal affairs.
The official Bahrain News Agency said the Foreign Ministry called Iranian Embassy’s acting charge d’affaires, Mortadha Sanubari, on Sunday evening to lodge the protest.
GCC chief Abdellatif Zayani on Monday said Iranian President Hassan Rouhani was offering to turn a “new page” with its Arab neighbors while its supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei had pledged to keep up support for Shiite opposition groups.
Zayani said such messages sent out “contradictory” signals and that Khamenei’s comments amounted to “unacceptable interference” in the affairs of Arab states.
Khamenei, in a speech on Saturday, said Iran’s agreement with world powers would not alter its support for the governments of Syria and Iraq nor its backing of “oppressed people” in Yemen and Bahrain, and the Palestinians.
The speech was contrary to “the principles of good neighborliness,” charged Zayani, vowing that the Arab states of the Gulf would “continue to defend their interests.”
Majority Sunni Gulf countries have reacted with caution to the nuclear deal, believing it will only embolden Tehran’s Shiite leaders.