Syria, Saudi Arabia to restore ties after decade of estrangement 

Syria and Saudi Arabia have agreed to reopen their embassies after cutting diplomatic ties more than a decade ago, media outlets reported on Thursday.

Saudi Arabian state television aired a report on Thursday, quoting an anonymous official in the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, acknowledging the talks between Damascus and Riyadh.

The two governments were “preparing to reopen embassies after Eid al-Fitr”, a Muslim holiday in the second half of April, a regional source aligned with Damascus told Reuters.

The decision was the result of talks in Saudi Arabia with a senior Syrian intelligence official, according to one of the regional sources and a diplomat in the Gulf.

Citing an official of the Saudi Foreign Ministry, the Saudi state television al-Ekhbariyah later confirmed that talks were ongoing with the Syrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates to resume consular services.

However, Syrian state media yet to comment on the issue.

This came after a Chinese-mediated talks in Beijing saw Saudi Arabia and Iran agree to reopen embassies in each others’ nations after years of tensions.

The United States, an ally of Saudi Arabia, has opposed moves by regional countries to normalize ties with the Syrian government, citing his government’s brutality during the conflict and the need to see progress towards a political solution.

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