Saudi Execution of Sheikh Nimr in No Way Justifiable: Iran’s FM

Saudi Execution of Sheikh Nimr in No Way Justifiable: Iran’s FM

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif took a swipe at the Saudi regime for following the policy of creating tensions in the region and said the kingdom’s execution of prominent Shiite cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr could not be justified at all.

“This measure (executing Nimr) is not justifiable in any way,” Zarif said at a joint press conference with his Iraqi counterpart in Tehran on Wednesday.

The top Iranian diplomat said nothing can justify the execution of a cleric who spent his whole life to promote Islam through peaceful dialogue and interaction.

While Iran continues to pursue dialogue and interaction to counter threats in the region, such as terrorism and extremism, Saudi Arabia has adopted an opposite approach, Zarif added.

Iran believes that creation of tensions in the region signifies a “position of weakness, not power”, the senior diplomat said of Saudi decision to execute the cleric and cut ties with Iran.

Tehran responded to the provocative measures with “dignity and magnanimity” but Riyadh failed to react properly, Zarif deplored.

The Iranian diplomat further described as “unacceptable” the attacks against Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran following the execution of Sheikh Nimr.

Anger boiled up in Iran, Iraq and elsewhere in the region following the execution of the top cleric on baseless terrorism-related charges, which also drew widespread international condemnation.

In the early hours of Sunday, furious demonstrators in the Iranian cities of Tehran and Mashhad stormed Saudi Arabia’s diplomatic buildings in protest at the Al Saud’s execution of the popular cleric.

President Rouhani criticized the incident and called for the perpetrators to be brought to justice but Saudi Arabia decided to sever ties with Iran.

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