Lebanon and Iraq abstained from voting on Arab League's closing statement that accused Tehran of "provocative acts" as top Arab diplomats met Sunday for talks on Saudi Arabia's diplomatic row with Iran.
AhlulBayt News Agency - Lebanon's Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil has refused to support the Arab League resolution condemning Iran, an Arab League statement said Sunday.
Arab League member states' foreign ministers held an emergency meeting in Cairo on Sunday over the ongoing diplomatic row between Saudi Arabia and Iran. The meeting's closing statement accused Tehran of "provocative acts," while Lebanon, as well as Iraq, abstained from voting on the statement, reports said.
"We protest the statement due to its mentioning of the Lebanese Hezbollah organization and accusations of terrorist activity. It [Hezbollah] is represented in the country's parliament and government, and thus we demanded removal of the expression for Lebanon's position to be identical with the common decision," Bassil said.
Arab League Chief Nabil Arabi was addressing the foreign ministers gathered in Cairo for emergency talks requested by Riyadh on the dispute, which erupted after Saudi Arabia executed prominent Muslim cleric Nimr al-Nimr.
Arabi called on diplomats meeting at the group's Cairo headquarters to "adopt a strong and clear common position calling on Iran to stop all forms of interference in the affairs of Arab nations."
Last week, protesters stormed the Saudi Arabian embassy in Iran after Riyadh executed top Iranian Shiite cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, along with 46 other people. Nimr had demanded more rights for Shiites, who are a minority in Saudi Arabia.
Shortly after the unrest, Saudi Arabia cut official ties with Iran. Tehran responded by imposing a total embargo on Saudi imports. On Sunday, Iran's Interior Ministry Spokesman Hossein-Ali Amiri condemned the attacks on Saudi Arabia's embassy.