Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister has used a trip to London to robustly defend his country’s more assertive role in the world, despite concerns it could escalate tensions with Iran.
After meeting US Secretary of State John Kerry, Adel al Jubeir insisted his country was right to intervene more aggressively in parts of the Middle East in an interview with Sky News.
“Now that Saudi Arabia has stepped up and taken decisive action in Yemen in supporting the Syrian opposition in standing up to Iran, people are saying ‘why are the Saudis doing this?’.
“It’s reckless, it’s one of those positions where it’s damned if we do damned if we don’t. Make up your minds. Do you want us to lead or want us to support? And if you want us to support, who’s going to lead?”
Adel al Jubeir is the new face of Saudi diplomacy. Young and telegenic with flawless English he is the first non-royal to take up the post. And he is on a charm offensive, after recent weeks of negative press about his government.
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