Iran, Kuwait urge boosting economic, political ties at equal levels

Iran, Kuwait urge boosting economic, political ties at equal levels

Ahead of his visit to Oman and Kuwait, Rowhani had expressed support for the latter's efforts to "resolve misunderstandings and boost relations" with Gulf countries.

In a meeting with Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah Ahmad Jaber al-Sabah, the Iranian President stressed that the two countries have closer political relations and economic ties should bolster as high as political relations.

"The aim of Mr Rouhani's visit to Muscat is to consult with Oman to look at ways that Iran can remove the hostility that exists with other Arab regional countries", an Iranian diplomat in Muscat told The National.

"In this trip, there will be discussions about the region, the situation in Iraq, Syria and in particular in Yemen", Iran's official news agency IRNA quoted him as saying.

Rouhani's tour excludes regional kingpin Saudi Arabia - the Islamic Republic's key rival.

"Heading a high-ranking delegation, Rouhani is to leave Tehran for Muscat on the first leg of his tour at the invitation of Oman's Sultan Qaboos bin Said Al Said", Iranian president's deputy chief of staff for communications and information, Parviz Esmaeili, said on Monday, Press TV reported.

Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Sabah visited Tehran last month, calling for a "normalization of ties and opening dialogue".

"The sectarian issues should not come between Iran and the Gulf states, and the focus for this visit is to seek a peaceful and lasting solution in the region that would benefit all".

Kuwait, where 30 percent of native citizens are Shias, has maintained normal relations with Tehran despite taking part in the Saudi-led military campaign on Yemen's Houthi rebels.

Tension has mounted between the Gulf and Iran since Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic ties with Tehran early previous year after two Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran were attacked by protesters following Riyadh's execution of a prominent Shia cleric.

Relations between predominantly Shia Iran and the mainly Sunni Arab countries of the Arabian Gulf, particularly Saudi Arabia, remain strained over their support for opposing sides in the conflicts in Syria and Yemen, as well as Iranian riling of Shia minorities in Arab countries.

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