Iranian official calls MBS 'delusional' after prince warns of war

Foreign Ministry spokesman slams Mohammed bin Salman after Saudi heir warned war with Tehran was just 10-15 years away.

    Saudi leaders have repeatedly praised Trump's strong stance on Iran deal [Bandar Algaloud/Reuters]
    Saudi leaders have repeatedly praised Trump's strong stance on Iran deal [Bandar Algaloud/Reuters]

    Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman has lashed out at Saudi Arabia's crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, after the 32-year-old heir to the throne warned war with Tehran could be just 10 to 15 years away.

    Bahram Qassemi warned bin Salman - known in as MBS - "not to dice with death" and called on veteran Saudi officials to teach the "delusional novice" of the fate former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein endured after he challenged the "Iranian nation's resolve".

    "This delusional novice, who is still too big for his boots, either does not know what war is, or has not studied history, or unfortunately has not talked to a venerable person," Qassemi was quoted by Iranian media as saying.

    Reciting a verse from a 13th-century poem, Qassemi added: "The ant seeking to grapple with an eagle is hastening to perish."

    He then asked Persian linguists in the Saudi royal family to translate the verse accuately for the crown prince.

    Qassemi's comments came after bin Salman said that Saudi Arabia could engage in a military confrontation against Iran if tougher international sanctions were not imposed against the Islamic Republic.

    "We must achieve this in order to avoid a military conflict, if we fail to do this, we will probably have a war with Iran in 10-15 years," bin Salman told The Wall Street Journal.

    Saudi Arabia has expressed alarm at what it views as creeping Iranian influence in the region and has stepped up its efforts to contain what it considers Iran's expansion through proxy conflicts and direct military engagement in Yemen.

    The kingdom has been a staunch critic of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which it says will alleviate Iran's economic woes and allow it to prop up affiliates like Hezbollah.

    Saudi authorities have repeatedly commended US President Donald Trump's tough stance on the landmark agreement. 

    Saudi Arabia vs Iran: Is the cold war heating up?

    UpFront

    Saudi Arabia vs Iran: Is the cold war heating up?

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera News


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