It’s common knowledge that the Israeli government considers Iran an existential threat, and that it has been trying to persuade the US to act more forcefully. And while there have always been rumblings of discontent with Iran among Arab nations, the WikiLeaks release Sunday provides concrete evidence that Israel isn’t the only one in the region to feel worried. The now-disclosed but formerly secret diplomatic cables reveal that several Sunni-led Arab nations, particularly Saudi Arabia, also sought to curb Shiite-led Iran. Below are five Arab countries keeping a watchful eye.
The WikiLeaks release of diplomatic cables could put Arab leaders in a tight spot – and make America's diplomatic dance a bit more awkward in the region.
More than two million Muslims have flocked to Saudi Arabia this week for the Hajj, the annual pilgrimage that Muslims are obligated to make at least once in their lifetime. Their destination is Mecca, Islam’s holiest city, and the pilgrimage is the fifth pillar of Islam, making it one of the religion’s chief obligations. The number of pilgrims that travel to Saudi Arabia every year have made the Hajj, which typically lasts five days, one of the greatest religious events in the world.
Israel is unlikely to object to the arms sale of up to 84 new F-15s and 1,000 'bunker-buster bombs' to Saudi Arabia that analysts say is meant to counter Iranian influence in the Middle East.
A record U.S. arms deal with Saudi Arabia is part of an effort to put pressure on Iran, partly by strengthening alliances with oil-rich neighbors also concerned by Iran's rise.
Israel doesn't oppose a US arms deal that would send advanced aircraft to Saudi Arabia, which is increasingly seen as essential to containing Iran's nuclear ambitions.
A government-appointed council of senior religious scholars in Saudi Arabia condemned terrorism financing and said it is forbidden by Islamic law.
Saudi poet Hissa Hilal competes, beneath a veil, for the $1.3 million prize Wednesday night in the finals of Million’s Poet, a hit Arab reality TV poetry contest.
Saudi Arabia said Wednesday that it had arrested 110 Al Qaeda suspects, about half of them foreigners. The Kingdom said the detained men were plotting suicide attacks on the country's oil installations.
During the first visit to Saudi Arabia by an Indian premier in nearly three decades, Manmohan Singh discussed terrorism, peace with Pakistan, and trade.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai is visiting Saudi Arabia to seek help convincing the Taliban to join peace talks. Riyadh would lend credibility to the effort, but is wary of getting involved.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai flew to Saudi Arabia Tuesday to seek help from Saudi Arabia, one of the few governments that hold any potential sway over the Taliban.
Saudi Arabia took a group of reporters to what had recently been a raging front line with the Shiite Houthi rebels of Yemen. The Kingdom's defense minister said the Houthi's have been repelled from Saudi Arabia and that they are now an "internal problem" for Yemen.
Washington has promised to increase development assistance to Yemen to about $63 million this year, but that's dwarfed by Saudi Arabia's pledge of $1.25 billion for its poor, unstable neighbor.
Yemen's Houthi rebels claim a Saudi Arabia air strike on Sunday killed 54 people, including women and children. The US is increasingly concerned restive Yemen is becoming a haven for terrorism.
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The Houthis rebels waging an insurgency against Yemen's government asked Saudi Arabia to stop its airstrikes against them. The Saudis began the strikes after the Houthis crossed into their border.
Saudi Arabia, a close US ally, has switched from a policy of isolation toward engagement. Some hope the warming could bolster US Middle East peace efforts.
Recent attacks in Indonesia and Saudi Arabia have left some wondering whether attempts to turn militants away from terrorism have failed.
Many Israelis see the president's decision to bypass Jerusalem as part of a broader shift in US priorities in the region.
Older leaders among the minority aim to peacefully address discrimination but warn that younger Shiites are pushing for militancy.