Saudi media attack Iran deal as assault on Arab interests

By REUTERS
July 15, 2015 14:56

 
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Saudi Arabian media attacked Iran's nuclear deal with world powers on Wednesday, with cartoonists depicting it as an assault on Arab interests and columnists decrying the focus on Tehran's atomic plans instead of its backing for regional militias.

Riyadh's official reaction to the deal was a terse statement that welcomed any agreement that would ensure Iran could not develop a nuclear arsenal, but stressed the importance of tough inspections and the ability to reimpose sanctions quickly.

In private, however, Saudi officials fear an Iran released from international pressure and economic sanctions will have more freedom and money to back allies across the region who are opposed by Riyadh.

A cartoon in Asharq al-Awsat, a pan-Arab daily close to King Salman's branch of the ruling family, showed a trampled body marked "Middle East", with a placard saying "nuclear deal" sticking from its head.

The top-hatted and turbaned silhouettes of America's Uncle Sam and an Iranian cleric ran across the body hand in hand, portraying a widely voiced concern that Washington's quest for a deal means it has realigned with Tehran at Arab expense.

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