Saudi Arabia would be forced to seek nuclear weapons if Iran became nuclear-armed, the Guardian quoted a senior Saudi official as saying on Wednesday.
"We cannot live in a situation where Iran has nuclear weapons and we don't. It's as simple as that," the official said. "If Iran develops a nuclear weapon, that will be unacceptable to us and we will have to follow suit," the official said, clarifying an earlier statement from Saudi Prince Turki al-Faisal.
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Faisal had told NATO officials that Iran obtaining a nuclear weapon "would compel Saudi Arabia … to pursue policies which could lead to untold and possibly dramatic consequences".
US State Department cables uncovered by whistle-blower website WikiLeaks
last year, revealed a Saudi leadership wary of Iran and its nuclear
aspirations.A cable from 2008
quoted former Saudi Ambassador to the US Adel al-Jubeir recalling Saudi
King Abdullah's "frequent exhortations to the US to attack Iran and so
put an end to its nuclear weapons program. 'He told you to cut off the
head of the snake,' he recalled to the Charge, adding that working with
the US to roll back Iranian influence in Iraq is a strategic priority
for the King and his government."
The document says that the Saudi foreign minister called for "severe US
and international sanctions on Iran, including a travel ban and further
restrictions on bank lending." It added that, "the foreign minister also
stated that the use of military pressure against Iran should not be
In its assessment, the US Embassy cable concluded that the Saudis, "are
eager to work with the US to resist and reverse Iranian encroachment in