Issue Brief on “Saudi-Iran Rapprochement: Opportunities for Pakistan”


Recent agreement between Iran and Saudi Arabia to restore diplomatic relations and economic ties is the latest development in the geopolitical shifts in the Gulf region taking shape since January 2021.

On 10 March 2023, Iran and Saudi Arabia announced the restoration of their diplomatic ties, the outcome of an agreement mediated by China. The restoration of diplomatic relations was announced through a Joint Trilateral Statement that mentioned that the reopening of Embassies within two months along with bilateral cooperation in different fields will be achieved between the two states.[1]  Diplomatic ties between Iran and Saudi Arabia were severed in 2016 after the Saudi execution of Shia cleric Nimr Al-Nimr, which sparked anger and protests in Iran. This latest development is seen as a positive step towards reducing long-standing tensions and moving towards peaceful resolution of conflicts in the Middle East.

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