US was informed about, not directly involved in Iran-Saudi Arabia talks - White House

Saudi Arabia and Iran agreed to re-establish diplomatic ties within two months after the talks.

John Kirby, National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications, answers questions during the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, US, February 17, 2023. (photo credit: REUTERS/EVELYN HOCKSTEIN)
John Kirby, National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications, answers questions during the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, US, February 17, 2023.
(photo credit: REUTERS/EVELYN HOCKSTEIN)

Saudi Arabia informed the United States government about its discussions with Iran to restore diplomatic relations but the US was not directly involved in the talks, White House spokesperson John Kirby said on Friday, according to Reuters.

"The Saudis did keep us informed about these talks that they were having, just as we keep them informed on our engagements, but we weren't directly involved," he said.

Saudi Arabia and Iran agreed to re-establish diplomatic ties within two months after the talks, which were mediated by China.

In December, the Media Line reported that talks between Saudi Arabia and Iran were gradually progressing but had hit a roadblock when Iranian officials claimed that Riyadh was supporting anti-government protests in Iran.

The two countries had concluded talks mediated by Iraq the previous April.

John Kirby, National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications, enters the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, US, February 17, 2023. (credit: REUTERS/EVELYN HOCKSTEIN)John Kirby, National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications, enters the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, US, February 17, 2023. (credit: REUTERS/EVELYN HOCKSTEIN)

Agreement endangers Israel's national security, Lapid warns

Former Prime Minister Yair Lapid warned on Friday that the agreement was dangerous for Israel's national security due to Iran's progress toward developing a nuclear weapon.

Debbie Mohnblatt/The Media Line and Tovah Lazaroff contributed to this report.