SAUDI ARABIA Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Saudi Arabia's crown prince called on the international community to take a "decisive stand" towards attacks on two oil tankers in a vital shipping route, which he blamed on Iran during an interview with Saudi-owned Asharq Al-Awsat.
"The Iranian regime did not respect the Japanese prime minister's visit to Tehran and while he was there replied to his efforts by attacking two tankers, one of which was Japanese," the newspaper quoted Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman as saying on its Twitter account.
In comments published early on Sunday, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman also said the kingdom's strategic relations with the United States would not be affected by "media campaigns or some stances published by U.S. entities."
Riyadh has come under mounting international scrutiny over its human rights record since last year's murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who had been living in the United States and writing for the Washington Post.
Bin Salman said the kingdom does not want a war in the region but would not hesitate to deal with any threat to its vital interests, amid heightened tensions with rival Iran.
Attacks on two oil tankers on Thursday in the Gulf of Oman, which the US and UK have blamed on Iran, have raised fears of broader confrontation in the region. Iran has denied any role in the strikes south of the Strait of Hormuz, a major transit route for oil.
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