Saudi Arabia has cut diplomatic ties with Iran following the execution of an eminent Shia Muslim cleric.
This announcement was revealed on Sunday when the Saudi government requested all Iranian diplomats to leave the country within 48 hours.
“The kingdom, in light of these realities, announces the cutting of diplomatic relations with Iran and requests the departure of delegates of diplomatic missions of the embassy and consulate and offices related to it within 48 hours. The ambassador has been summoned to notify them,” Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir explained.
''We are determined not to allow Iran to undermine our security, we are determined not to let Iran mobilise or create or establish terrorist cells in our country or in the countries of our allies," Al-Jubeir said.
Shortly after the execution of the cleric Nimr al-Nimr and dozens of others accused of terror activities, protesters in Iran rallied and attacked the Saudi embassy in Tehran.
‘‘We are determined not to allow Iran to undermine our security, we are determined not to let Iran mobilise or create or establish terrorist cells in our country or in the countries of our allies,” Al-Jubeir said.
Diplomats have already started to leave the Middle East Country. The Saudi government has also called on its diplomats in Iran to travel back.
Meanwhile, Iran has accused Saudi Arabia of being unjust. Since the row, hundreds of protesters have taken to the streets in the wake of the renewed conflict.
I hereby condemn #SheikhNimr's execution & send my condolences to his family & Muslim world. This act violates human rights & Islamic values— Hassan Rouhani (@HassanRouhani) January 3, 2016
“Killing a knowledgeable man, who promoted virtue and prevented vice, and had religious zeal, is certainly a crime, a great crime. It is also a mistake because the (spilled) blood will undoubtedly bring (divine) retribution,” Iranian Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said.
This is not the first time the two countries have severed diplomatic ties due to sectarian divide.