HRH Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz to Asharq Al-Awsat: We Don’t Want War but We Won’t Hesitate in Dealing with Any Threat

Sunday 1440/10/13 - 2019/06/16
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Jeddah, June 16, 2019, SPA -- His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz , Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, said that Saudi Arabia does not want a war in the region, but stressed that it “will not hesitate in dealing with any threat against our people, sovereignty and vital interests.”
In an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, the Crown Prince said that the Kingdom “supported the re-imposition of US sanctions on Iran out of our belief that the international community needed to take a decisive stance against Iran.”
He hoped that the Iranian regime “would opt to become a normal state and cease its malign behavior.”
The Crown Prince told Asharq Al-Awsat that the attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf, oil facilities in the Kingdom and Abha airport “underscore the importance of our demands for the international community to take a decisive stance against an expansionist regime that has supported terrorism and spread death and destruction over the past decades not only in the region, but the whole world.”
He criticized Iran for using the nuclear deal’s economic benefits “to support its hostile activities in the region through its tools of chaos and destruction.”
While stressing that the Kingdom’s hand is always extended for peace, he said that “the Iranian regime did not respect the (Japanese) prime minister as a guest (in Iran) during his visit and in effect responded to his efforts by attacking the two oil tankers in the Gulf, one of which was apparently Japanese.”
“It also employed its militias to carry out a heinous attack against Abha Airport. This is clear evidence of the Iranian regime’s policy and intentions to target the security and stability of the region.”
The Crown Prince said that Saudi Arabia “places great importance on the strategic ties with the US,” considering it a “main factor in achieving regional security and stability.”
He also expressed confidence that “our strategic relations with the US will not be affected by media campaigns or arbitrary stances.”
The Kingdom constantly seeks to “clarify facts and misconceptions by some parties in the US and other countries. We listen to various views and we welcome constructive and rational advice, but ultimately our priority is our national interest.”
He said Saudi Arabia backed all efforts to reach a political solution to the Yemeni crisis but “the Houthi militias prioritize Iran’s agenda over the interests of Yemen and its people.”
10:29 LOCAL TIME 07:29 GMT