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Morocco Severs Relations With Iran


Morocco's state news agency reports that Rabat has cut diplomatic ties with Iran.

A foreign ministry statement carried by the MAP news agency Friday said the move is effective immediately.

Morocco recalled its envoy to Iran for a week late last month to protest an Iranian official's comments that appeared to question the sovereignty of Bahrain. Former parliamentary speaker Ali Akbar Nateq Nouri sparked alarm in the Gulf state by saying Bahrain was an Iranian province until 1971.

MAP reported that Iran failed to answer Rabat's request for an explanation about what it called the Iranian government's singling out of Morocco over its solidarity with Bahrain.

Iranian officials have tried to downplay the comments, sending its interior minister for a visit to Manama and assuring Bahrain that Tehran respects its sovereignty.

Arab nations have recently expressed concern about Iran's regional intentions. Saudi Arabia's foreign minister this week sought Arab unity in the face of what he called the "Iranian challenge."

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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