CAIRO - The Arab League called on Tehran on Monday to halt what it described as a media campaign against Bahrain over a proposal for political and military union between Gulf Arab states.
Saudi Arabia has been pushing the idea of closer Gulf integration to contain Shi'ite Muslim unrest in Bahrain and counter the influence of regional Shi'ite power Iran.
Riyadh's initial goal appears to be a merger with Bahrain, where majority Shi'ites have been staging pro-democracy demonstrations targeting the Sunni Muslim ruling family for over a year. Bahraini leaders have been publicly receptive to union.
"The Iranian government must stop its media escalation campaign and provocative statements from Iranian officials regarding the situation in Bahrain," Arab League Secretary General Nabil Elaraby said in a statement.