Swiss embassies to enable contact between Iran, Saudi Arabia

Switzerland will facilitate diplomatic contact between Iran and Saudi Arabia via its embassies, the country's Foreign Ministry said Sunday in Bern.

The neutral European country will use its so-called protecting power mandate, a "go-between" function that allows Switzerland to take over some diplomatic duties of the politically-estranged countries.

The adoption of the mandate was announced after Foreign Minister Didier Burkhalter made a one-day visit to Riyadh.

Iran and Saudi Arabia broke off diplomatic relations at the beginning of January after Saudi Arabia's execution of a dissident Shiite cleric triggered outrage in Tehran and led protesters to storm the Saudi embassy.

Shiite Iran and the Sunni Saudi kingdom have long jockeyed for the dominant position in the Middle East through strategic alliances. In the ongoing Syrian conflict, Tehran supports the regime of President Bashar al-Assad, while Riyadh backs opposition rebel groups.

Last update: Sun, 14/02/2016 - 16:54

More from World

Indonesian soldier found alive two weeks after helicopter crash

A soldier has been found alive two weeks after an Indonesian army helicopter he was travelling in crashed, killing...

Six policemen killed in Cairo blast

Six policemen were killed in a blast on a main street in Cairo on Friday, the Egyptian Interior Ministry said.

UN warns tens of thousands displaced in Aleppo in need of aid

Heavy shelling was taking place Friday in the last rebel-held districts of eastern Aleppo, as the United Nations...

South Korean parliament votes to impeach corruption-tainted president

South Korea's National Assembly on Friday voted to impeach President Park Geun Hye, who has been dogged by...

US not allowed to launch South China Sea patrols from the Philippines

Manila will not allow the United States to launch naval and aerial patrols in the disputed South China Sea from the...