Iran warns Saudi Arabia to 'reflect' on vow to open oil taps

AFP , Tuesday 17 Jan 2012

Tehran labels Saudi Arabia's offer to increase oil production to compensate for embargoed Iranian exports as 'not friendly'

Iran on Tuesday warned Saudi Arabia to "reflect" on its vow to make up for any shortfall in Iranian oil exports under new sanctions, saying Riyadh's pledge to step into the market was "not friendly".

Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi issued the warning in an interview with Iran's Arabic language broadcaster Al-Alam.

"We invite Saudi officials to further reflect and consider" their offer to compensate for curbed Iranian oil exports, Salehi said.

He attacked comments by Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi to CNN saying Saudi oil output could be boosted to by around 2.6 million barrels per day -- the same amount that Iran exports -- and that the world will not permit Iran to close the strategic Strait of Hormuz.

"These signals are not friendly signals," Salehi said.

He added: "The security of the Persian Gulf is a collective security and Iran is a major player in this regard."

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