Riyadh to shift away from US over Syria
DOHA - Reuters
Saudi Arabia is said to make a major shift in US policy over Syria. AFP photoSaudi Arabia’s intelligence chief has said the kingdom will make a “major shift” in dealings with the United States in protest at its perceived inaction over the Syria war and its overtures to Iran, a source close to Saudi policy said Oct.22.
Prince Bandar bin Sultan told European diplomats that Washington had failed to act effectively on the Syria crisis and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, was growing closer to Tehran, and had failed to back Saudi support for Bahrain when it crushed an anti-government revolt in 2011, the source said.
It was not immediately clear if Prince Bandar’s reported statements had the full backing of King Abdullah.
“The shift away from the U.S. is a major one,” the source close to Saudi policy said. “Saudi doesn’t want to find itself any longer in a situation where it is dependent.
“Prince Bandar told diplomats that he plans to limit interaction with the U.S.,” he said.
“This happens after the U.S. failed to take any effective action on Syria and Palestine. Relations with the U.S. have been deteriorating for a while, as Saudi feels that the U.S. is growing closer with Iran and the U.S. also failed to support Saudi during the Bahrain uprising.”
The source declined to provide more details of Bandar’s talks with the diplomats, which took place in the past few days.