Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman is a man of peace. After his country's oilfields were attacked by drones from suspected Yemeni Houthi rebels - and with the alleged blessing of Iran - he believes avoiding war with the latter is still the best option.
"A war between (Saudi Arabia) and Iran would lead to "total collapse of the world economy" and must be avoided, the Crown Prince said on Monday. In statements that echo the United States' disapproval of military action against Iran for its alleged involvement in the attacks, Bin Salman stressed a "political and peaceful solution is much better than a military one."
Analysts have warned that prices of crude and oil in the world market will soar to unimaginable highs not seen in history if any war breaks out in the gulf. Still, world leaders must take a firm stance to deter the second-largest Middle Eastern country from taking any further hostile acts, the prince said during a recent interview with CBS.
US President Donald Trump, Saudi Arabia, and other European countries have all pointed to Iran as the brains behind the Sept. 14 drone assaults that have destroyed two important Saudi oil facilities, which disrupted more than 5 percent of world oil production.
After carefully analyzing the situation and their possible reactions, Trump and his economic and military advisers decided to impose more sanctions on Iran, while France, Germany, and Britain have called for a meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. Tehran vehemently denied it was behind the attackers, claiming they were the work of Houthi rebels resisting a Saudi-led alliance.
The drone raids on Saudi Arabia's oil fields were inspired by what Bin Salman calls "stupidity." He said there's is no point at all and "only a fool would attack 5 percent of the world's oil supplies."
The Crown Prince has reiterated that he is in favor of the US and Iran holding a face-to-face dialogue. Trump had actually mentioned the possibility of meeting the Iranian leader until the drone attacks were carried out.
For Rouhani, he has time and again said they will not negotiate with the US until the Western power goes back to the terms of the 2015 nuclear agreement that Trump left in 2018 and scrap all sanctions.
The war in Yemen has claimed the lives killed thousands and triggered one the world's worst humanitarian disasters since Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates intervened in 2015 to restore an allied government ousted by the Houthis.