WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States is concerned about Iran’s threat to Saudi Arabia and will not hesitate to respond if necessary, a White House spokeswoman said on Tuesday.
A National Security Council spokesperson said: “We are concerned about the threat landscape and are in constant communication with the Saudis through our military and intelligence services.” “We will not hesitate to act to protect our interests and our partners in the region.”
The official said after The Wall Street Journal reported that Saudi Arabia had shared information with the United States warning of imminent attacks from Iran on Saudi targets.
Saudi government media outlets did not immediately respond to Reuters’ request for comment.
On October 20, Iranian Revolutionary Guard Commander-in-Chief Hossein Salami said he warned Saudi leaders not to turn to Israel, referring to their “glass palace”.
Riyadh celebrated a U.S.-brokered deal in 2020 that saw two Gulf allies forge ties with Israel and create a new regional anti-Iran axis, but last year closed with Tehran to curb tensions in the Gulf. Initiated direct negotiations over uncertainties regarding U.S. engagement in the region.
Saudi Arabia blamed Iran for missile and drone attacks on Iranian oil plants in 2019, a charge Tehran denies. The main forces of Sunni and Shiite Islam have been at odds for decades, supporting allies fighting proxy wars across the region.
The latest concerns come at a time of strained relations between Riyadh and Washington after the Saudi-led OPEC+ alliance decided to cut its oil production target last month, which has sparked fears of a surge in gasoline prices in the US. .
President Joe Biden has said that US relations with Riyadh will have consequences, and several senators have called on the White House to freeze all cooperation with Riyadh, including arms sales. Saudi Arabia relies heavily on the United States for its security.
The US says Iran supplied Russia with drones to use in its war with Ukraine, and Washington has set aside efforts to revive the Iran nuclear deal that then-President Donald Trump abandoned in 2018. .
Reporting by Steve Holland.Editing by Josie Kao and Michael Perry
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