Saudi Nuclear Deal Raises Stakes for Iran Talks (WSJ via Daily Alert)
- Saudi Nuclear Deal Raises Stakes for Iran Talks – Jay Solomon and Ahmed Al Omran
Saudi Arabia has quietly signed a nuclear-cooperation agreement with South Korea, raising concerns that a deal with Iran, rather than stanching the spread of nuclear technologies, risks fueling it. Saudi Arabia’s former intelligence chief, Prince Turki al-Faisal, has publicly warned that Riyadh will seek to match the nuclear capabilities Iran is allowed to maintain as part of any final agreement reached with world powers.
U.S. officials said there is particular concern about Saudi Arabia’s decades-long military alliance with Pakistan, a nuclear-armed state with a history of proliferating military technologies. A number of senior Arab officials have warned the White House in recent months the Saudi government could seek Pakistan’s aid in developing nuclear technologies – or even buy an atomic bomb – if it sees an agreement with Iran as too weak.
“The proliferation of nuclear technologies is a nightmare the White House would like to discount rather than contemplate,” said Simon Henderson of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. “This is more than just an imaginary threat.” (Wall Street Journal)