Iran criticizes Egypt’s Abul Gheit remarks on Arab ties

Tehran–Iran has criticized Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul Gheit for reportedly saying Tehran should keep out of the internal affairs of Arab countries and not meddle in Iraq and Lebanon.

"We recommend that Mr Ahmed Abul Gheit… pays more attention to the unity among the Islamic world instead of pursuing the interest of the region's ill-wishers who seek to divide Islamic nations," the official IRNA news agency quoted a foreign ministry source as saying.

The unnamed Iranian official added that Abul Gheit should "think about guarding Egypts' rights and security which is often violated by the Zionist regime."

On Friday, the Qatari newspaper Al-Sharq quoted Abul Gheit as saying that "Iranian interventions in the internal affairs of the Gulf must not be allowed. We say to our brothers in Iran… Iraq must be left alone and Lebanon must be left alone. And Iran should not intrude in Bahrain in any way."

Tehran-Cairo ties have been severed since 1980 following the Islamic revolution in Iran and Egypt's recognition of Israel. The two countries have since only maintained interest sections in each other's capitals.

Mainly Sunni Muslim countries in the Arab world, such as Saudi Arabia, are also concerned about Shiite Iran's support for the Shiite militant group Hezbollah in Lebanon and the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas.

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