Shiite Iran and Sunni-ruled Saudi Arabia are arch-rivals who back opposing sides in regional conflicts from Yemen to Syria. Never mind that Iran does not have a nuclear weapons program, insists it has never wanted nuclear weapons, and is subjected to the most rigorous inspection regime of any country.
Israel has long argued that, should Iran develop nuclear weapons, it would trigger similar projects among the Persian power's Arab rivals and further destabilise the region. "Once you get these other [Middle Eastern] nations with nuclear weapons, that gets to be a highly risky, very destabilized situation".
The prospect of a Middle East nuclear arms race will unnerve European leaders who are urging Donald Trump to retain the Iran nuclear deal which imposed strict curbs on the Iranian nuclear programme in return for sanctions relief.
Iran now has uranium enrichment capabilities, but they have been curbed under the nuclear deal, which requires it to restrict its nuclear activities in exchange for sanctions relief. "You've seen Congress put more sanctions on Iran due to their nefarious activities".
A bipartisan group of senators, Republican Mike Lee, independent Bernie Sanders and Democrat Chris Murphy, are attempting to take advantage of a provision in the 1973 war powers act that allows any senator to introduce a resolution on whether to withdraw U.S. armed forces from a conflict not authorised by Congress. Bob Corker (R-TN), by contrast, endorsed the Pentagon's argument, saying the USA does so much military engagement around the world that it would be risky to think the War Powers Act could apply to all of it. When asked about his previous comments comparing Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader of Iran, to Hitler, he replied, "Absolutely". Many countries around the world and in Europe did not realize how risky Hitler was until what happened, happened. "I don't want to see the same events happening in the Middle East". "Its army is not among the top five armies in the Muslim world", he said.
A French judge has reportedly issued an global arrest warrant for a Saudi princess.
In previous talks, Saudi Arabia has refused to sign up to any agreement that would deprive it of the possibility of one day enriching uranium.
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