Iran is a paper tiger with steel claws - Saudi's Prince Turki Al Faisal says | Eurasia Diary -

24 August, Saturday

Iran is a paper tiger with steel claws - Saudi's Prince Turki Al Faisal says

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Iran is a paper tiger with steel claws represented by its proxy militias from Hezbollah to the Houthis, Saudi Arabia’s Prince Turki Al Faisal said on Tuesday.

The kingdom’s former ambassador to Washington and London and previous head of intelligence said in an interview with broadcaster CNBC that Tehran’s network of local armed groups across the region had the sole purpose of furthering their influence at the expense of impoverishing the nation.

“The leadership in Iran has developed into a paper tiger with steel claws, the steel claws are the militias that they have established throughout the Middle East,” he said.

The main aim of these groups, he added, “is to further Iran's influence and its domination over the areas in the Middle East.”

Prince Faisal is currently chairman of King Faisal Foundation's Centre for Research and Islamic Studies. He is due to speak at the 2019 Milken Institute Mena Summit in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.

However, the massive financial commitment these groups require, the long-serving senior diplomat said, was taking its toll at home.

“There are bread lines. There are demonstrations, spontaneous demonstrations in all of the cities in Iran. We've seen huge protests that have taken place with people chanting why are we helping Syria why are we helping Lebanon,” he told CNBC's Hadley Gamble.

Prince Faisal said he believed it was far too early to say that the regime would collapse under the weight of US-led international sanctions on Tehran but that it was important to listen to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani when he says the country is facing its worst economic situation in 40 years.

“The Iranian people are the first victims of this leadership,” he said. “So I hope that with Mr Trump's sanctions against Iran we're going to see a change of the of the conduct of the leadership of Iran.”

The National

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